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Polyurethane Resin – Reclassification and Re-labelling of MDI
The European Classification and Labelling Directive 67/548/EEC will be substituted by the CLP-Regulation (Classification, Labelling and Packaging of substances and mixtures). This will align existing EU legislation with the United Globally Harmonized System (GHS).

The polyurethane resin that Cable Services currently supplies to you either in bulk or as part of a joint kit, contains a chemical ‘hardener’ commonly referred to as MDI (4,4’ diphenylmethane di-isocyanate).

Under the new CLP Regulations, a number of new hazard phrases, including those listed below, and the following pictograms will be included on the label for polyurethane resin which contains MDI: (These will replace the risk phrases).

  • H351 Suspected of causing cancer
  • H373 May cause damage to respiratory system through prolonged or repeated exposure
  • H334 May cause allergy or asthma symptoms or breathing difficulties if inhaled.

(It should be noted that material component suppliers and manufacturers interpretation of the CLP Regulations may vary slightly and therefore pictograms and actual phrases may be slightly different to that detailed in this communication).

It is important to point out that this reclassification applies to all polyurethane resin that utilises MDI and is not therefore limited to a particular manufacturer. It is also important to consider that it is only the classification of MDI that is changing.

CLP Regulation states that polyurethane resin, containing MDI, manufactured from 1st December 2010 must comply with the new labelling requirements. Material with old labels can be used up within two years from 1st December 2010.

A number of suppliers have already commenced with the new labelling requirements. This potentially means that polyurethane resin, containing MDI, could be supplied in either bulk or joint kits with the new labelling before the 1st December 2010.

As a result of the change in classification, there will be no further restrictions regarding the handling and use of MDI in the workplace and no changes in the Occupational Exposure limits (OELs).
Should you have any questions about polyurethane resin or the new labelling please contact your Cable Services Area Sales Manager or local Cable Services/Smith Electrical Branch and we will endeavour to help.

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