ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences - Potassium Ferrocyanide

 

ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences

 


 

POTASSIUM FERROCYANIDE [K4Fe(CN)6.3H20]

SYNONYMS
Yellow prussiate of potash, potassium hexacyanoferrate II.
GENERAL PRECAUTIONS
Avoid skin and eye contact.
Avoid inhalation or ingestion.
Keep away from heat.
Keep away from acids.
Wash hands thoroughly after handling.
CHARACTERISTICS
Yellow crystals or crystalline powder.
HEALTH HAZARD DATA
Potassium ferrocyanide can be absorbed into the body by inhalation or ingestion of the powder. Insufficient medical data is available on the effect of this substance on human health. It is a skin and eye irritant. Inhalation will cause sore throat and coughing.
TREATMENTS
Skin ­ immediately remove contaminated clothing and wash the affected area with soap or mild detergent and large amounts of water until all evidence of the chemical has been removed (approximately 15 minutes). If irritation persists seek medical attention. Wash contaminated clothing before re­use.
Eyes ­ immediately wash the affected eye with large amounts of water until all evidence of the chemical has been removed (approximately 15 minutes). If irritation or pain persist seek medical attention.
Inhalation ­ remove from the area of exposure to fresh air. If breathing has ceased apply artificial respiration. Keep warm and allow to rest. If irritation persists or develops seek medical attention.
Ingestion ­ wash out the mouth thoroughly with water and give water to drink. Seek immediate medical advice.
INCOMPATIBILITY
Heating produces toxic fumes of hydrocyanic acid. Reaction with acids can also produce hydrocyanic acid and strong oxidising agents.
STORAGE
Store in a cool, dry atmosphere away from heat and acids.
HANDLING
Use a fume hood to minimise exposure to this substance. Wear protective clothing. A long sleeved laboratory coat or gown, rubber gloves, safety goggles and a face mask as a minimum standard.
DISPOSAL
WEAR:
Long rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition.
1 General treatment.
Absorb the liquid with vermiculite or on paper towel. If a solid sweep on to paper towel. Place on an iron or glass dish in a fume hood. Evaporate and burn the paper.
On skin: immediately wash the affected area with soap and a large amount of water.
2 Hydrocyanic acid leak.
Turn on the fume hood. allow the gas to leak into a container of sodium hydroxide solution while stopping the leak. Add excess calcium hypochlorite to the alkali cyanide. discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
3 Cyanides.
Scoop into a large beaker and make alkaline with sodium hydroxide solution. Add to the slurry an excess of ferrous sulphate solution. After one hour discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
4 Nitriles.
Add an excess of calcium hypochlorite solution to produce a cyanate. Scoop the slurry into a large beaker. After one hour discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with a soap solution containing some hypochlorite.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1 Add with stirring to strong calcium hypochlorite solution. Allow to stand for 24 hours then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
OR
2 Liquid nitrile can be mixed with a flammable solvent and sprayed into an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.
ENVIRONMENT:

 


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