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Chemical Sampling Information (CSI)
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General Description

Synonyms: Anhydrous hydrobromic acid; HBr

OSHA IMIS Code Number: 1420

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 10035-10-6

NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: MW3850000

Department of Transportation Regulation Number (49 CFR 172.101) and Guide: 1048 125 (anhydrous); 1788 154 (solution)

NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards, Hydrogen Bromide: chemical description, physical properties, potentially hazardous incompatibilities, and more

Exposure Limits

OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL):

General Industry: 29 CFR 1910.1000 Table Z-1 - 3 ppm, 10 mg/m3 TWA

Construction Industry: 29 CFR 1926.55 Appendix A - 3 ppm, 10 mg/m3 TWA

Maritime: 29 CFR 1915.1000 Table Z-Shipyards - 3 ppm, 10 mg/m3 TWA

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV): 2 ppm, 6.6 mg/m3 Ceiling

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL): 3 ppm, 10 mg/m3 Ceiling

Health Factors

NIOSH Immediately Dangerous To Life or Health Concentration (IDLH): 30 ppm

Potential Symptoms: Eye, skin, nose, throat irritation; cough, sore throat, labored breathing; pulmonary edema (may be delayed); skin, eye pain, burns; alopecia; frostbite (from liquid)

Health Effects: Irritation-Eye, Nose, Throat, Skin---Marked (HE14); Acute lung damage (HE11); Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS) or Bronchiolitis obliterans (HE10)

Affected Organs: Respiratory system, eyes, skin


  1. Disinfecting agents used in hot tubs and spas, such as elemental bromine, sodium bromide/monopotassium persulfate, and bromochlorodimethylhydantoin can serve as sources of HBr at acidic pH.
  2. HBr may be formed in tissues when bromine gas reacts with tissue water to form HBr and hypobromous acid (HOBr). HOBr may subsequently break down into HBr and oxygen free radicals.

Literature Basis:

  • NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards: Hydrogen Bromide.
  • International Chemical Safety Cards (WHO/IPCS/ILO): Hydrogen bromide.
  • Burns, M.J. and Linden, C.H.: Another hot tub hazard: toxicity secondary to bromine and hydrobromic acid exposure. Chest 111(3): 816-819, 1997.
  • Kraut, A. and Lilis, R.: Chemical pneumonitis due to exposure to bromine compounds. Chest 94(1): 208-210, 1988.
  • Orlando, J.P., de Haro, L., Jouglard, J. and Leroyer, S.: Reactive airway dysfunction syndrome and bronchiolitis obliterans after exposure to acid vapors [French]. Rev. Pneumol. Clin. 53(6): 339-342, 1997.
  • Pohanish, R.P. (editor): Hydrogen Bromide. In, Sittig's Handbook of Toxic and Hazardous Chemicals and Carcinogens, Fourth Ed., Vol. 1. Norwich, NY: Noyes Publications, William Andrew Publishing, 2002, pp. 1274-1276.

Date Last Revised: 06/08/2004

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method (SLC1):

  • sampling media: Specially cleaned silica gel tube (400/200 mg sections with glass fiber filter) (Supelco, ORBO-53; SKC, 226-10-03; or equivalent)
    maximum volume: 96.0 Liters
    maximum flow rate: 0.2 L/min (TWA)
    maximum volume: 2.5 Liters
    maximum flow rate: 0.5 L/min (Ceiling)
    current analytical method: Ion Chromatography; IC
    method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA ID-165SG)
    method classification: Partially Validated
    note: Submit as a separate sample, however, hydrogen chloride can be analyzed from the same sample. The sample is analyzed for bromide (or chloride, if requested) and the result reported as the acid. Make sure that the glass fiber filter plug is firmly in contact with the silica gel before and after sampling. Report the presence of bromide (or chloride) salts to the analytical laboratory.

On-Site Sampling Techniques/Methods:

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: Gastec
    model/type: 15L
    sampling information: 0.5 to 10 strokes
    upper measurement limit: 16 ppm
    detection limit: 0.04 ppm
    overall uncertainty: 25% for 0.8 to 4 ppm, 16% for 4 to 16 ppm
    method reference: on-site air secondary (manufacturer)

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