Chemical hazard | Wikipedia audio article


A chemical hazard is a type of occupational
hazard caused by exposure to chemicals in the workplace. Exposure to chemicals in the workplace can
cause acute or long-term detrimental health effects. There are many types of hazardous chemicals,
including neurotoxins, immune agents, dermatologic agents, carcinogens, reproductive toxins,
systemic toxins, asthmagens, pneumoconiotic agents, and sensitizers. These hazards can cause physical and/or health
risks. Depending on chemical, the hazards involved
may be varied, thus it is important to know and apply the PPE especially during the lab.Long-term
exposure to chemicals such as silica dust, engine exhausts, tobacco smoke, and lead (among
others) have been shown to increase risk of heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure.==Types of hazards==
Liquids such as acids, solvents especially if they do not have a label
Vapors and fumes Flammable materialsChemicals can change their
physical state depending on temperature or pressure. Thus it is important to identify the health
risks as these states can determine the potential route the chemical will take. For example, gas state chemicals will be inhaled
or liquid state chemicals can be absorbed by the skin.==Routes to exposure==
Ingestion Inhalation from fumes
Poisoning Explosion==Symbols==
Hazard pictographs are a type of labeling system that alerts people at a glance that
there are hazardous chemicals present. The symbols help identify whether the chemicals
that are going to be in use may potentially cause physical harm, or harm to the environment. The symbols are distinctive, as they are shaped
like diamonds with red borders. These signs can be divided into: Explosive (exploding bomb)
Flammable (flame) Oxidizing (flame above a circle)
Corrosive (corrosion of table and hand) Acute toxicity (skull and crossbones)
Hazardous to environment (dead tree and fish) Health hazard/hazardous to the ozone layer
(exclamation mark) Serious health hazard (cross on a human silhouette)
Gas under pressure (gas cylinder)These pictographs are also subdivided into class and categories
for each classification. The assignments for each chemical depends
on their type and their severity.==First aid==
In case of emergency, it is recommended to understand first aid procedures in order to
minimize any damage. Different types of chemicals can cause a variety
of damage. Most sources agree that it is best to rinse
any contacted skin or eye with water immediately. Currently, there is insufficient evidence
of how long the rinsing should be done, as the degree of impacts will vary for substances
such as corrosive chemicals. However, the recommended flush time is as
follows: 5 minutes – non- to mild irritants
15 – 20 minutes – moderate to severe irritants and chemicals that cause acute toxicity
30 minutes – most corrosives 60 minutes – strong alkalis such as sodium,
potassium or calcium hydroxideTransporting the affected person to a health care facility
may be important, depending on condition. In the case that the victim needs to be transported
before the recommended flush time, then flushing should be done during the transportation process. Some chemical manufacturers may state the
specific type of cleansing agent that is recommended.==Long-term risks=====Cancer======Cardiovascular disease===
A 2017 SBU report found evidence that workplace exposure to silica dust, engine exhaust or
welding fumes is associated with heart disease. Associations also exist for exposure to arsenic,
benzopyrenes, lead, dynamite, carbon disulphide, carbon monoxide, metalworking fluids and occupational
exposure to tobacco smoke. Working with the electrolytic production of
aluminium, or the production of paper when the sulphate pulping process is used, is associated
with heart disease. An association was also found between heart
disease and exposure to compounds which are no longer permitted in certain work environments,
such as phenoxy acids containing TCDD (dioxin) or asbestos.Workplace exposure to silica dust
or asbestos is also associated with pulmonary heart disease. There is evidence that workplace exposure
to lead, carbon disulphide, or phenoxyacids containing TCDD, as well as working in an
environment where aluminium is being electrolytically produced, are associated with stroke