By United Steelworkers
Open iTunes to buy and download apps.
The USW Safety app is designed as an easy and accessible chemical safety reference for workers.
Search the New Jersey Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) database by chemical name, DOT number, CAS number, or RTK Substance number to view the entire fact sheet. This includes information on workplace exposure limits, health hazards, workplace controls, personal protective equipment, handling and storage, and emergency information.
Flip through an electronic version of the NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards or search for a chemical by name in the index to view its properties, exposure limits, recommended personal protective equipment and first aid.
For workers who need more information, the final section of the app uses the locator feature to display contact information for the nearest United Steelworkers district office and the OSHA district office.
What's New in Version 1.1
Fixed bugs with MSDS search.
Updated phone directory.
Several performance and memory usage enhancements.
Updated application images for iPhone 4.
MSDS Zoom Ability
Need to add ability to zoom on MSDS sheets. Pointless if you can't read. I do like the App just need to fix the ability to zoom.
App Useful for Non Steelworkers as Well
As a student in my second semester of Organic Chemistry lab, I am greatful to the USW for putting together this application and providing it free of charge, not just for steelworkers, but for the general public. For those cash-strapped individuals who don't want to pay to access public information, this app is an excellent alternative.
There are, however, a few problems with the app. The major downside is the inability to zoom in to view MSDSs, though it is possible to zoom in to view the NIOSH guidebook. While this is not a major problem for me because I have an iPhone with a retina screen and good eyesight, it is an important factor for people with older iPhones or poor eyesight to consider. Additionally, searching the MSDS database by name is somewhat hit and miss. For instance, in the teaching lab I am enrolled in, we often use the solvent 'dichloromethane', so naturally, I looked it up upon downloading the application. The compound was not found. However when I looked up the compound using the non-IUPAC (or common) name, methylene chloride, I was directed to a very thorough account of the compound, which actually said that another name of the compound is dichloromethane. This might not be a significant problem for me, as I am know the common names for many compounds, but for someone whose knowledge of the compound they work with is the name it is called in the workplace, such as a steel worker, this could mean an inability to find the compound they are searching for. Finally, it would be nice if a feature to search the NIOSH was implemented, though scrolling through the index is easy enough.
Great start. There is a need for worker safety and health apps!