chemical resistance boots

Commonly encountered chemicals in industry

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Commonly encountered chemicals in industry

chemical resistance boots

Working in industrial professions comes with certain hazards. Whilst some may see these as the obvious ones like heights, heavy machinery and harsh conditions, the less evident ones sometimes pose the greatest risk to human health. The chemicals used in industrial applications are vast and have dangerous side effects when exposed to them. Whilst chemical resistance boots have offered much protection from these risks, it still pays to handle them correctly.

Here are a few of the chemicals commonly associated with industrial environments:

Acetone
Yes, this one is found in many nail polish removers but it is also found in many paint products. It has twice the vapour density of air and evaporates quickly out of its container. Inhaling acetone can cause drowsiness and even respiratory failure if the level of exposure is high. You can counteract these effects by ensuring that containers of acetone are well sealed and wearing splash goggles, gloves and masks to limit your exposure. Acetone is also flammable, so keep this in mind and store it accordingly.

Ammonia
From the growing of crops to the farming of livestock, ammonia is a prevalent chemical in the agriculture industry. Exposure to ammonia affects the skin, eyes and breathing. Protective goggles, gloves, masks and chemical resistance boots can lessen the risks associated with exposure but it should be noted that liquid ammonia could dissolve certain plastics and natural rubbers so storage apparatus must be suitable.

Benzene
From pesticides to drugs, lubricants, dyes and even crude oil, benzene is a commonly used chemical in industry. Exposure can cause drowsiness, shortness of breath, elevated heart rate and headaches. Ingestion of benzene could result in death. Extreme caution should be exercised and the correct PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) should be worn for sufficient protection. Benzene is also highly flammable.

Sodium Hydroxide
The most highly-produced commercial caustic chemical worldwide and is used in the production of soap, other chemicals and the food processing industry. Exposure to skin will cause burns and exposure to eyes could cause blindness. Effective protection needs to be worn when handling or dealing with sodium hydroxide. It should be stored in air-tight containers as exposure to air means that it will absorb moisture, making it exceptionally dangerous. Contact with some metals could form explosive hydrogen gas.

Sulphuric Acid
Used in batteries, manufacturing, leather and dye production, sulphuric acid is also used to produce fertiliser for the agriculture industry. Exposure could damage the lungs and respiratory system with severe burns being the result of skin exposure. Sulphuric acid should be stored in glass containers, as it will react with organic materials like natural rubbers.

Wayne offers comprehensive ranges of world-class gumboots that cater for all kinds of working environments and their associated chemicals. For more info view the chemical resistance table on our website today www.wayne-safety.com or call us on +27 11 671 0200.


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