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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170169247 - Employee Exposed To Formalin Vapors

Accident: 170169247 -- Report ID: 0950612 -- Event Date: 05/03/1991
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11178111804/02/19918062Santa Theresa Community Hospital (Kaiser)
At approximately 9:30 a.m. on Friday, May 3, 1991, housekeeping was called to the dirty instrument room in the hospital's operating room area to clean up a small (9 in. by 12 in.) formalin spill. While Employee #1 was using a mop to clean up the liquid, her nose and throat became irritated by the formalin vapors. Approximately one hour later, Employee #1 started to feel dizzy and intoxicated. She was taken to the emergency room, and then sent home. She had a headache and hangover-like symptoms for the next 2 days. Employee #1 had not had proper hazard communication training or personal protective equipment for the situation. Also, the clean-up procedures were incorrect for a substance containing formaldehyde.
Keywords: vapor, ppe, work rules, cleaning, inhalation, dizziness, chemical vapor, formaldehyde, overexposure, untrained
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 111781118 Non Hospitalized injury Asphyxia Janitors and cleaners

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