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CAS Registry No.: 1332-21-4
Other Names: Chrysotile, White asbestos, Serpentine asbestos
Main Uses: Historical use in industrial applications, construction, and as fire retardant.
Appearance: Fibres. Colour varies depending on type of asbestos
Canadian TDG: UN2590
D2A - Very Toxic (Chronic toxicity; Carcinogenicity)
Emergency Overview: Fibres. Odourless. Will not burn. VERY TOXIC. Prolonged or repeated exposure causes damage to lungs. CANCER HAZARD. May cause cancer, if inhaled.
Main Routes of Exposure: Inhalation; skin contact; eye contact.
International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC): Group 1 - Carcinogenic to humans.
American Conference for Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH): A1 - Confirmed human carcinogen.
Inhalation: Take precautions to ensure your own safety before attempting rescue (e.g. wear appropriate protective equipment). Move victim to fresh air.
Skin Contact: Wash gently and thoroughly with lukewarm, gently flowing water and non-abrasive soap for 5 minutes.
Eye Contact: Immediately flush the contaminated eye(s) with lukewarm, gently flowing water for 5 minutes, while holding the eyelid(s) open. If irritation or pain persists, see a doctor.
Ingestion: Have victim rinse mouth with water. Call a Poison Centre or doctor if the victim feels unwell.
First Aid Comments: If exposed or concerned, see a doctor for medical advice. All first aid procedures should be periodically reviewed by a doctor familiar with the chemical and its conditions of use in the workplace.
Note to Physicians: Some jurisdictions specifically regulate asbestos and require a complete medical surveillance program. Specific information should be sought from the appropriate government agency in your jurisdiction.
Flammable Properties: Does not burn.
Suitable Extinguishing Media: Not combustible. Use extinguishing agent suitable for surrounding fire.
Specific Hazards Arising from the Chemical: Caution must be exercised if a fire or explosion occurs in an area or building containing asbestos. Evacuate area. When possible, avoid generation of asbestos dust into the air. Not known to generate any hazardous decomposition products in a fire.
Personal Precautions: Evacuate the area immediately. Isolate the hazard area. Keep out unnecessary and unprotected personnel.
Methods for Containment and Clean-up: Avoid generating dust. Collect using shovel/scoop or approved HEPA vacuum and place in a suitable container for disposal. Avoid dry sweeping. If necessary, use a dust suppressant such as water. Do not use compressed air for clean-up.
Handling: Before handling, it is important that all engineering controls are operating and that protective equipment requirements and personal hygiene measures are being followed. Avoid generating dusts. Only trained personnel should work with this product. Comply with applicable regulations.
Storage: Store in tightly closed, properly labelled containers. Empty containers may contain hazardous residue. Store separately. Keep closed.
ACGIH® TLV® - TWA: 0.1 f/cc (respirable fibers); A1
Exposure Guideline Comments: TLV® = Threshold Limit Value. TWA = Time-Weighted Average. A1 = Confirmed human carcinogen.
NOTE: In many (but not all) Canadian jurisdictions, the exposure limits are similar to the ACGIH® TLVs®. Since legislation varies by jurisdiction, contact your local jurisdiction for exact details. A list is available in the OSH Answers on Canadian Governmental Occupational Health & Safety Departments.
A list of which acts and regulations that cover exposure limits to chemical and biological agents is available on our website. Please note that while you can see the list of legislation for free, you will need a subscription to view the actual documentation.
Engineering Controls: Use stringent control measures such as process enclosure to prevent product release into the workplace. Use a ventilation system separate from other exhaust ventilation systems. Filter the contaminated air before it is directly exhausted to the outside.
Eye/Face Protection: Not required but it is good practice to wear safety glasses or chemical safety goggles.
Skin Protection: Coveralls or long sleeve shirts and pants.
At concentrations above the NIOSH REL, or where there is no REL, at any detectable concentration:
(APF = 10,000) Any self-contained breathing apparatus that has a full facepiece and is operated in a pressure-demand or other positive-pressure mode; or Any supplied-air respirator that has a full facepiece and is operated in a pressure-demand or other positive-pressure mode in combination with an auxiliary self-contained positive-pressure breathing apparatus.
APF = Assigned Protection Factor; REL = Recommended Exposure Limit
Recommendations apply only to National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) approved respirators. Refer to the NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards for more information.
NOTE: NIOSH has classified this material as a potential occupational carcinogen, according to specific NIOSH criteria. This classification is reflected in these recommendations for respiratory protection, which specify that only the most reliable and protective respirators be worn at any detectable concentration. NIOSH has changed their policy on respiratory protection for possible carcinogens but not yet revised these recommendations for respiratory protection. The requirements in Canadian jurisdictions may vary.
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Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy, currency and completeness of the information, CCOHS does not guarantee, warrant, represent or undertake that the information provided is correct, accurate or current. CCOHS is not liable for any loss, claim, or demand arising directly or indirectly from any use or reliance upon the information.