Summer Safety Facts When Using Gasoline
You've probably heard the phrase, "Don't leave safety to chance". As we head into the summer months and spend more time outdoors - whether it's camping or mowing the lawn - we need to remember some key safety facts about gasoline use. And what better way to communicate this potentially life-saving information to your co-workers than with an ALPHA electronic Message Center. ALPHA Message Centers can play a very dynamic role in your company safety/employee communications program by highlighting and promoting information that might otherwise go unnoticed.
How many of these gasoline safety facts do you know? How about your coworkers?
Gasoline bums or explodes too easily to be safely used as a cleaner or fire starter. Many terrible accidents have occurred because of the mis-use of gasoline. Here are two typical scenarios:
Gasoline is a highly flammable liquid. The vapors which escape from gasoline are easily ignited by any source of ignition, even a spark caused by static electricity. These vapors are heavier than air and collect in low unventilated places. When the accumulated vapors meet a source of ignition - such as a pilot light - an explosion results. When the fuel comes into contact with the skin, it strips away natural oils, leaving the skin vulnerable to irritation, infection and chronic skin problems or dermatitis. This is one reason why gasoline should not be used as a skin cleanser.
The vapors of gasoline are also hazardous to breathe. If large quantities of these vapors build up in an unventilated place, they can cause vomiting, dizziness, mental confusion, coma, brain damage and even death.
Poisoning by swallowing gasoline is another serious hazard - it is lethal in even small amounts. A drop of gasoline in the lungs can cause fatal chemical pneumonia. So never siphon gasoline by mouth. (Various gasoline siphoning devices are available at hardware and auto supply store Use them with care and according to directions.)
If you must store gasoline for equipment such as a lawnmower, keep only small quantities. Never store it in the house. Keep it in a cool, shaded, well ventilated area away from living quarters.
Always treat seemingly empty gasoline containers with caution, because they
probably contain explosive vapors. If you would like more information
about how your company can benefit from an ALPHA vital signs and safety/employee
communications program, please contact Alpha-American