NFPA Chemical Hazard Label


NFPA Rating - The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has developed a standard system (ANSI/NFPA 704) for indicating the health, flammability, and reactivity hazards of chemicals. In addition, a special precaution symbol may be used where necessary.

This system of identifying hazards associated with various materials was developed primarily for fire protection and emergency personnel but can be useful to anyone who needs to handle potentially hazardous material. As stated in NFPA 704, "This standard provides a simple system of readily recognizable and easily understood markings, which will give at a glance a general idea of the inherent hazards of any material and the order of severity of these hazards as they relate to fire prevention, exposure, and control".


Click on an area of the image below for more specific information,
or scroll down the page for some general information.

NFPA Label NFPA Special Symbols



General Rating Summary

Health (Blue)

4DangerMay be fatal on short exposure. Specialized protective equipment required
3WarningCorrosive or toxic. Avoid skin contact or inhalation
2WarningMay be harmful if inhaled or absorbed
1CautionMay be irritating
0No unusual hazard


Flammability (Red)

4DangerFlammable gas or extremely flammable liquid
3WarningFlammable liquid flash point below 100° F
2CautionCombustible liquid flash point of 100° to 200° F
1Combustible if heated
0Not combustible


Reactivity (Yellow)

4DangerExplosive material at room temperature
3DangerMay be explosive if shocked, heated under confinement or mixed with water
2WarningUnstable or may react violently if mixed with water
1CautionMay react if heated or mixed with water but not violently
0StableNot reactive when mixed with water


Special Notice Key (White)

WWater Reactive
OXOxidizing Agent


Special Precaution Symbols

Flammable! Flammable!

Explosive! Explosive!

Corrosive! Corrosive!

Poison! Poison!



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Mike Perry / lmp1@cdc.gov