Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Solutions: Chemicals

Potential Hazard
  • Possible employee exposure to chemicals.
Possible Solutions
  • Identify chemical hazards and perform appropriate exposure evaluations.
    • Perform exposure measurements for the chemicals used.
    • 29 CFR 1910.1000 Table Z-1 contains permissible exposure limits for various chemicals.
  • Address all dermal exposures.
  • Provide appropriate ventilation to reduce concentration levels in the air. Three-sided enclosures, or "wet benches" are commonly used.
  • Provide PPE as appropriate to prevent eye and skin contact. [29 CFR 1910 Subpart I]
  • Use respiratory protection when necessary to further reduce exposure and protect employees. [29 CFR 1910.134]
  • Design and use specialized processing, material handling, and storage equipment to properly contain corrosive chemicals. Consider both normal use and emergency scenarios. Use automation, when possible.
  • Install emergency facilities to provide immediate treatment in the event of an accidental exposure. According to 29 CFR 1910.151, provide suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body for immediate emergency use whenever the eyes or body may be exposed to corrosive materials.
Additional Information
  • Occupational Health Guidelines for Chemical Hazards. US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Publication No. 81-123, (1981, January). Provides a table of contents of guidelines for many hazardous chemicals. The files provide technical chemical information, including chemical and physical properties, health effects, exposure limits, and recommendations for medical monitoring, personal protective equipment (PPE), and control procedures.

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