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Safety Acronyms

Quick Tips #161

Acronyms are second nature to safety professionals. But the large number of acronyms in use today makes it difficult to remember them all. Most people know OSHA is the acronym for Occupational Safety and Health Administration; and SDS stands for Safety Data Sheet. What about MUTCD or SAE? Grainger has compiled the following list of commonly used safety acronyms and meanings as a handy reference guide.


ACGIH American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists
ADA Americans with Disabilities Act
AED Automated External Defibrillator
AGA American Gas Association
AIHA American Industrial Hygiene Association
ANSI American National Standards Institute
APHA American Public Health Association
APR Air-Purifying Respirator
ASAE American Society of Agricultural Engineers
ASHRAE American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers
ASP Associate Safety Professional
ASQC American Society for Quality Control
ASSE American Society of Safety Engineers
ASTM American Society for Testing Materials
ATC Automatic Temperature Compensation
BBP Bloodborne Pathogens
BBS Behavior-Based Safety
BCSP Board of Certified Safety Professionals
BS British Standards
BSI British Standards Institute
CAA Clean Air Act
CAL-OSHA California Occupational Safety and Health Administration
CAS Chemical Abstracts Service (Number)
CE Conformance European
CERCLA Comprehensive Environment Response, Compensation and Liability Act
cfm Cubic feet per minute
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
CGA Compressed Gas Association
CIH Certified Industrial Hygienist
CSA Canadian Standards Association
CSFM California State Fire Marshall
CSP Certified Safety Professional
CWA Clean Water Act
dB Decibels
dB(A) Decibels A-Scale
DIS Draft International Standards
DOE Department of Energy
DOL Department of Labor
DOT Department of Transportation
DVO Diffuse Viewing Only
EDP Electronic Data Processing
EEOC Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
EGA Enhanced Graphics Array
EHS Environmental Health and Safety
EN European Norms
EPA Environmental Protection Agency
EPDM Ethylene-Propylene Terpolymer
EPR Ethylene Propylene
ESCBA Escape Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus
ESD Electrostatic Dissipative
FDA Food and Drug Administration
FEP Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene
FID Flame Ionization Detector
FIFRA Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act
FM Factory Mutual
FMCSR Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations
FR Flame Resistant
GC Gas Chromatography
GFCI Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter
GHS Globally Harmonized System
gpm Gallons per minute
GSA General Service Administration
HAZWOPER Hazardous Waste Operation and Emergency Response
HCA Hazardous Communication Act
HDPE High-Density Polyethylene
HEPA High-Efficiency Particulate Air (filtration)
Hg Mercury
HID High-Intensity Discharge
HMIG Hazardous Materials Identification Guide
HMIS Hazardous Materials Information System
HMTA Hazardous Materials Transportation Act
hp Horsepower
HPLC High-Performance Liquid Chromatography
HVAC Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning
IAQ Indoor Air Quality
IARC International Agency for Research on Cancer
IATA International Air Transportation Association
ICAO International Civil Aviation Organization
ID Inside Diameter
IDLH Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health
IEC International Electrotechnical Commission
IMO International Maritime Organization
IP Industrial Plus
IPS Iron Pipe Standard
IR Infrared
ISEA Industrial Safety Equipment Association
ISO International Organization for Standardization
JSA Job Safety Analysis
LCD Liquid Crystal Display
LDPE Low-Density Polyethylene
LED Light-Emitting Diode
LEL Lower Explosive Limit
LLDPE Linear Low-Density Polyethylene
lpm Liters per minute
LOTO Lockout Tagout
LUST Leaking Underground Storage Unit
MAF Maximum Arresting Force
MECO Modern Engineering Company
mg/m3 Milligrams per meter cubed
mil 1 mil equals 1/1000 of an inch
mppcf Million particles per cubic foot
MSA Mine Safety Appliances
MSHA Mine Safety and Health Administration
MUTCD Manual for Uniform Traffic Control Devices
NEC National Electric Code
NEMA National Electrical Manufacturer’s Association
NEPA National Environmental Policy Act
NESHAP National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants
NFC National Fire Code
NFPA National Fire Protection Association
NFR National Fire Rating
NiCad Nickel Cadmium (battery)
NIOSH National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health
NIST National Institute of Standards and Technology
NMFC National Motor Freight Class
NPDES National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System
NPT National Pipe Thread
NPTF National Pipe Thread Fine
NRC Nuclear Regulatory Commission
NRR Noise Reduction Rating
NSC National Safety Council
NSF National Sanitation Federation
NSR No Sewing Required
NTP National Toxicology Program; Normal Temperature and Pressure
OD Outside Diameter
ODP Open-Dripproof
ORM Other Regulated Material
ORP Oxidation Reduction Potential
OSHA Occupational Safety and Health Administration
PAPR Powered Air-Purifying Respirator
PCB Polychlorinated Biphenyl
pCi/L pico Curies/Liter
PEL Permissible Exposure Limit
PETG Polyethylene Terephthalate G Copolyester
PFAS Personal Fall Arrest System
pH Hydrogen ion concentration
PID Photo Ionization Detector
POP Performance-Orientated Packaging
PPE Personal Protective Equipment
ppm Parts per million, 1 x 10-6
ppb Parts per billion, 1 x 10-9
psi Pounds per square inch
psig Pounds per square inch gauge
PSM Process Safety Management
PVA Polyvinyl Alcohol
PVC Polyvinyl Chloride
RCRA Resource Conservation and Recovery Act
REL Recommended Exposure Limit
RFI Radio Frequency Interference
RMS Root Mean Squared
RTK Right-to-Know
S.E.T.R.A.F. Safety of Enclosures for Toxics Using Recirculating Air Filtration
SAE Society of Automotive Engineers
SARA Superfund Amendment and Reauthorization Act
SBR Styrene Butadiene Rubber
SCBA Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus
SCT Spectrum Control Technology
SDS Safety Data Sheet
SPCC Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures
SRL Self-Retracting Lifeline
STEL Short-Term Exposure Limit
TDS Totally Dissolved Solids
TEFC Totally Enclosed Fan-Cooled
TLV Threshold Limit Value
TSCA Toxic Substance Control Act
TWA Time-Weighted Average
UEL Upper Explosive Limit
UFC Uniform Fire Code
UL Underwriter’s Laboratory
ULC Underwriter’s Laboratory of Canada
ULPA Ultra-Low Penetration Air (filtration)
UN United Nations
USCG United States Coast Guard
USDA United States Department of Agriculture
USFDA United States Food and Drug Administration
USP United States Pharmacopoeia
UST Underground Storage Tank
UV Ultraviolet
VDT Video Display Terminal
VGA Video Graphics Array
VOC Volatile Organic Compound
WBGT Wet Bulb Glove Temperature
WEEL Workplace Environmental Exposure Limit
WHMIS Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System
YAG Yttrium Aluminum Garnet


(Rev. 3/2015)

Find even more information you can use to help make informed decisions about the regulatory issues you face in your workplace every day. View all Quick Tips Technical Resources at

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Grainger has the products, services and resources to help keep employees safe and healthy while operating safer facilities. You’ll also find a network of safety resources that help you stay in compliance and protect employees from hazardous situations. Count on Grainger for lockout tagout, fall protection equipment, confined space products, safety signs, personal protective equipment (PPE), emergency response and so much more!

Please Note:
The content in this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only. This publication is not a substitute for review of the applicable government regulations and standards, and should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. Readers with specific compliance questions should refer to the cited regulation or consult with an attorney.

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