• Fahad Gohar

#Sulfuric #Acid #Hazards


Other names or identifying information for sulfuric acid:

CAS Registry No.: 7664-93-9 Other Names: Battery acid, sulphuric acid Main Uses: Manufacture of fertilizers and other chemicals; petroleum refining; battery component. Appearance: Clear colourless oily liquid. Yellow to dark brown in colour when impure. Odour: Odourless


Potential health effects of sulfuric acid:

Main Routes of Exposure: Inhalation. Skin contact. Eye contact.

Inhalation: Not expected to be an inhalation hazard unless heated or misted. VERY TOXIC, can cause death. Can cause severe irritation of the nose and throat. Can cause life-threatening accumulation of fluid in the lungs (pulmonary edema). Symptoms may include coughing, shortness of breath, difficult breathing and tightness in the chest. Long-term damage may result from a severe short-term exposure.

Skin Contact: CORROSIVE. Contact can cause pain, redness, burns, and blistering. Permanent scarring can result. A severe exposure can cause death. Eye Contact: CORROSIVE. Contact causes severe burns with redness, swelling, pain and blurred vision. Permanent damage including blindness can result.

Ingestion: Can burn the lips, tongue, throat and stomach. Symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps and diarrhea. Permanent damage can result. Can cause death.

Effects of Long-Term (Chronic) Exposure: At low concentrations: Can cause dry, red, cracked skin (dermatitis) following skin contact. At high concentrations: May wear away tooth enamel when breathed in. May harm the respiratory system. Can irritate and inflame the airways.

Carcinogenicity: Not known to cause cancer. Strong inorganic mists containing sulfuric acid are carcinogenic to humans. Has been associated with: cancer of the larynx, lung cancer.


First aid measures for sulfuric acid:

Inhalation: Take precautions to ensure your own safety before attempting rescue (e.g. wear appropriate protective equipment). Move victim to fresh air. Keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing. If breathing is difficult, trained personnel should administer emergency oxygen. DO NOT allow victim to move about unnecessarily. Symptoms of pulmonary edema may be delayed. Immediately call a Poison Centre or doctor. Treatment is urgently required. Transport to a hospital.

Skin Contact: Avoid direct contact. Wear chemical protective clothing if necessary. Quickly take off contaminated clothing, shoes and leather goods (e.g. watchbands, belts). Quickly and gently blot or brush away excess chemical. Immediately flush with lukewarm, gently flowing water for at least 30 minutes. DO NOT INTERRUPT FLUSHING. If it can be done safely, continue flushing during transport to hospital. Immediately call a Poison Center or doctor. Treatment is urgently required. Transport to a hospital. Double bag, seal, label and leave contaminated clothing, shoes and leather goods at the scene for safe disposal.

Eye Contact: Avoid direct contact. Wear chemical protective gloves if necessary. Quickly and gently blot or brush chemical off the face. Immediately flush the contaminated eye(s) with lukewarm, gently flowing water for at least 30 minutes, while holding the eyelid(s) open. If a contact lens is present, DO NOT delay flushing or attempt to remove the lens. Neutral saline solution may be used as soon as it is available. DO NOT INTERRUPT FLUSHING. If necessary, continue flushing during transport to hospital. Take care not to rinse contaminated water into the unaffected eye or onto the face. Immediately call a Poison Center or doctor. Treatment is urgently required. Transport to a hospital.

Ingestion: Have victim rinse mouth with water. If vomiting occurs naturally, have victim lean forward to reduce risk of aspiration. Have victim rinse mouth with water again. Immediately call a Poison Center or doctor. Treatment is urgently required. Transport to a hospital.

First Aid Comments: Some of the first aid procedures recommended here require advanced first aid training. All first aid procedures should be periodically reviewed by a doctor familiar with the chemical and its conditions of use in the workplace.


Fire hazards and extinguishing media for sulfuric acid:

Flammable Properties: Does not burn.

Suitable Extinguishing Media: Not combustible. Use extinguishing agent suitable for surrounding fire. ONLY Use water to keep non-leaking, fire-exposed containers cool.

Unsuitable Extinguishing Media: DO NOT use water or water-based extinguishing agents.

Specific Hazards Arising from the Chemical: Contact with water causes violent frothing and spattering. Reacts with metals to produce highly flammable hydrogen gas. Closed containers may rupture violently when heated releasing contents. In a fire, the following hazardous materials may be generated: corrosive sulfur oxides.



Credit: CCOHS


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