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NFPA 704

2017 Edition, 2017

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Standard System for the Identification of the Hazards of Materials for Emergency Response

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EFFECTIVE DATE: 06/02/2016 *
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Description / Abstract:

This standard shall address the health, flammability, instability, and related hazards that are presented by shortterm, acute exposure to a material under conditions of fire, spill, or similar emergencies.


This standard shall provide a simple, readily recognized, and easily understood system of markings that provides a general idea of the hazards of a material and the severity of these hazards as they relate to emergency response.

The objectives of the system shall be as follows:

(1) To provide an appropriate signal or alert and on-the-spot information to safeguard the lives of both public and private emergency response personnel

(2) To assist in planning for effective fire and emergency control operations, including cleanup

(3) To assist all designated personnel, engineers, and plant and safety personnel in evaluating hazards

This system shall provide basic information to firefighting, emergency, and other personnel, enabling them to easily decide whether to evacuate the area or to commence emergency control procedures.

This system also shall provide those personnel with information to assist in selecting fire-fighting tactics and emergency procedures. 1.2.5 Local conditions can have a bearing on evaluation of hazards; therefore, discussion shall be kept in general terms.