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Health risk when storing SO2 bottles

878 494 Alexander Hanf

Article in “Technical Security” Volume 9, October 2019:   Sulfur dioxide is often used as a protective gas in the glass or metal industry. It is usually set up in pressurized gas cylinders for temperature control next to thermoprocessing plants. The necessary risk assessment for the storage of sulfur dioxide in accordance with Section 5 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Section 6 of the Ordinance on Hazardous Substances generally results in the obligation to store it in suitable storage facilities. In this German article, the proper storage in SO2 cabinets is presented, which safely prevents health hazards for the employees. Sulfur dioxide concentrations in breathing air that are above the maximum workplace concentration of 2.7 mg / m³ sulfur dioxide (SO2) in air can lead to headaches, nausea and drowsiness in humans. At higher concentrations, the bronchi and lungs are severely damaged. SO2 bottles for temperature control are often stored indoors, also directly next to thermoprocessing plants, sometimes without any occupational safety measures. In order to protect the health of the employees staying there and to comply with the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, however, SO2 bottles must be kept in a suitable storage facility. The typical design of a suitable SO2 cabinet consists of: Safety gas cylinder cabinet for three sulfur dioxide (SO2) bottles with 50 liters each and a nitrogen (N2) bottle with 10 liters. You can read the full article here.

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