Car care sector uses large quantities of hazardous chemicals which pose high risks to workers and to the environment. On average, 40-60 hazardous chemicals as mixtures are in use in each car service in Estonia. Toyota car services were approached within the frame of Fit for REACH light cases in Estonia. This included both the training of the representatives of Estonian Toyota car care facilities on handling of hazardous chemicals as well as site visits and consultancy in all the Toyota car service shops in Estonia (11) and one shop in Latvia and Lithuania. The car care companies were very motivated to partake in the project to improve their chemicals management in order to comply with legal requirements and to get the ISO 14 001 certification.
The aim was to introduce to the car care companies as downstream users of chemicals the REACH requirements and how to make their chemical management better (keeping the inventory of chemicals) and reduce risks. The training focused on explaining what are the substances of very high concern, the candidate list and authorisation list, restrictions and on where to find information about hazardous chemicals (ECHA databases). The CLP regulation was introduced and the main principles of classification and labelling of chemicals were presented. Chemicals inventory template was also provided with detailed advice for setting up the inventory.
The car care facilities varied in their level of chemicals management. The main problem in all the shops was related to the labelling of chemicals, as these were often not in Estonian. In many cases safety data sheets were out of date and needed upgrading. Several facilities did not have an inventory of hazardous chemicals or the inventory didn’t comply with all legal requirements.
With the help of project LIFE Fit for REACH we expect to see better overview of chemicals in use, their hazards and reduced risk from chemicals for workers in Toyota car care facilities. Representatives of the facilities acknowledged during the training that chemicals used in car care are really hazardous and their use must strictly comply with all legal requirements.