4 Safety Tips for Handling Denatured Alcohol
Denatured alcohol is an alcohol mixture that contains ethyl alcohol and methanol, a type of alcohol that is very harmful when ingested. This mixture is usually dyed in purple for people to easily identify it as a non-ingestible alcohol. Ingestion of this mixture may lead to blindness as well as vomiting. To avoid this and harmful effects from occurring, here are some essential tips that you must follow:
1. Proper Labelling
Properly labelling the container can go a long way. It prevents someone from incorrectly identifying it as a drinkable alcoholic beverage or a simple rubbing alcohol. However, plainly labelling it as denatured alcohol may also be misleading to people who are not familiar with the product. Therefore, it would be helpful to also draw a warning symbol such as a skull and crossbones (the universal symbol for “poisonous”) as a clear reminder.
2. Proper Storage
For proper storage, put away the solution in a place that is not easily accessible to children. Moreover, it is important to keep the solution away from high temperatures or any source of heat. Alcohol is highly flammable, thus, it should be stored at cool, dry, places. Never leave it in contact or near flammable materials like paper, wood, and clothing to avoid spontaneous combustion.
3. Proper Disposal
Before throwing an empty container, make sure that you eradicate all traces of alcohol by washing it thoroughly with water first.
4. Keep Potable Alcohol Ready at Home
In case of ingestion, an immediate step is to let the person consume potable alcohol. This first aid solution delays or slows down the metabolism of the of the dangerous chemical, thus, providing more time to seek professional help.
9 Simple Tips in Handling Paint Thinner
Paint thinner is used to thin oil-based paint as well as to remove and clean excess paint from surfaces. Different paint thinners have varying degrees of toxicity. Paint thinner can cause serious injury when swallowed or inhaled, therefore, it is vital that it is handled, stored, and disposed properly. Here are some guides and tips that you can follow for safe usage of paint thinners:
1. Make sure you have adequate ventilation when working with paint thinners.
The fumes that paint thinners produce can cause headache, nausea, and other health problems. It is important that you work in an area that is well-ventilated so that air can circulate properly.
2. Wear safety clothing or equipment.
Avoid getting the substance from splashing into your eyes with trusty safety goggles. Furthermore, protect your respiratory system from fumes by wearing a mask when working with paint thinners.
3. Keep Paint thinner away from acidic and flammable materials.
Paint thinner is a reactive substance. It can create hazardous chemical reactions with acids and acidic materials. Paint thinner is also volatile, thus, it is best to keep it away from heat and flammable materials such as cigarettes, stoves, and the like.
4. Only mix paint thinner with paint.
Mixing painting with other substances aside from paint may cause dangerous chemical reactions.
5. Avoid consuming food near the work station
Do not eat or drink when working with paint thinner as it could easily contaminate whatever you consume. This can lead to accidental ingestion of the substance and ultimately, nausea and other health problems.
If you have to rest and eat after handling paint thinner or between tasks, make sure to leave your work equipment behind and wash your hands with soap and water thoroughly before handling your food. Washing your hands properly may also prevent skin issues like inflammation, irritation, and redness.
6. Avoid using paint thinner as a generic cleaner.
Aside from the risk of fire, using paint thinners to simply clean surfaces of dining tables, walls, floors, and the like, can increase the risk of being exposed to the harmful fumes for long periods of time. It can also permanently damage furniture or any materials you directly use it on.
7. Get prompt medical attention when needed.
Paint thinner can cause various health issues like skin irritation and trouble in breathing. In case these events occur while handling paint thinner, make sure to immediately seek medical attention. While waiting for the health personnel to arrive, immediate actions include washing the paint thinner off the affected skin area with soap and water.
In case of contact with the eyes, wash the substance away under running water for at least 10 minutes.
8. Properly dispose unused paint thinner.
Never pour paint thinner down drains. To be able to throw it in trash bins, mix an absorbent material like sawdust or cat litter into the paint thinner and leave it sitting out in a well-ventilated area. Wait for the mixture to dry into clumps before sealing the whole can into a plastic bag and disposing of it in the trash.
9. Properly store the paint thinner away from reach of children.
Always keep the paint thinner in a cool, dry place that is also not accessible to children. Make sure that the container is tightly shut to avoid spillage.
6 Ways to Properly Handle Muriatic Acid
As a cleaning agent that is highly corrosive, it is of utmost importance to handle Muriatic Acid (also known as hydrochloric acid) properly. If this substance comes in contact with the skin or is inhaled, it can result to severe problems. Be able to clean and remove rust with Muriatic Acid safely by following these simple safety precautions:
Wear the right clothing and body equipment.
a. Avoid wearing normal clothing. This increases the probability of the acid getting in contact with the skin. Also, being a highly corrosive substance, muriatic acid can react chemically with normal clothing resulting in damage.
To ensure safety, wear special chemical resistant clothing made of Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or Butyl rubber and an apron over it. PVC and Butyl Rubber are materials that can resist damage from hydrochloric acid.
b. The fumes of muriatic acid can also be very harmful. It can cause damage to the respiratory tract and organ linings. Prevent the fumes from getting inhaled by always wearing a safety mask over your face while working with muriatic acid.
c. Don’t forget to always use safety goggles with side shields to prevent the acid from splashing into the eyes.
d. Gloves and shoes that are made of PVC or Butyl rubber are also very important when using muriatic acid. Wearing these materials makes sure that you are safe from spills and chemical reactions. The idea is to leave no skin exposed.
2. Work in an appropriate place.
To prevent the build-up of fume and to reduce the amount of toxins you assimilate, always make sure that your work station has plenty of ventilation.
Additionally, keep the acid away from metals and heat. Muriatic acid is not flammable itself. However, it can react with metals to produce a very flammable and harmful hydrogen gas.
3. Avoid mixing the acid with other substances without checking first.
Ensure the safety of the activity by getting the right advice and instructions from reliable sources. Muriatic Acid is a highly reactive material and can react explosively when combined with other chemicals and liquid, even water in some cases.
Here’s a tip that you must always remember when diluting hydrochloric acid with water: always pour the acid into the water instead of the other way round to avoid producing dangerous reaction like producing toxic fumes, smoke, and heat.
4. In case of emergency, get medical attention immediately.
If the acid accidentally makes contact with the skin, eyes, or is ingested, contact a doctor right away. While getting in contact with the nearest hospital, the following steps can helps lessen the severity of damage the acid can cause:
a. In case of contact with the skin or eyes, wash the affected area immediately for at least 15 minutes.
b. In case of ingestion, wash the mouth with water as opposed to inducing vomiting. Also, give the person a glass of water or milk.
c. In case of difficulties on breathing from inhaling the fumes, move outdoors for fresh air and provide immediate medical attention.
5. Follow proper storage and disposal measures
Muriatic acid should be stored and locked in a cool, dark, dry, and ventilated area, away from known incompatible substances. It should be contained inside a securely closed container and properly labelled.
For correct disposal, follow local regulation activities. Do not pour undiluted muriatic acid down drains as it can corrode your plumbing. Moreover, strictly avoid pouring the acid into bodies of water such as pond or lakes. As a highly hazardous substance, it can alter the pH of the water and can cause serious danger to aquatic life.
In case of spills, carefully add water to the substance and use soda, ash, or lime to neutralize the diluted acid. Next, absorb the neutralized fluid with vermiculite or any similar material and dispose of it properly.
Strictly keep it away from children and pets.
Muriatic acid can cause serious injuries and can permanently damage whatever comes in contact with it. It is essential that it is not placed in easily accessible areas for maximum safety.