ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences



Cedarwood oil is a natural product with a variable molecular structure.

Oil cedar, red cedarwood oil, cedrus atlantica oil.
Colourless to slightly yellow viscous liquid with a cedar odour. Moderately flammable.
Cedarwood oil is incompatible with strong oxidants. Heating produces toxic oxides of carbon.
There is a slight fire and explosion hazard when exposed to heat or flame. It is used in perfumes and insecticides and is a mild irritant and allergen. It has been used to induce abortions, sometimes with fatal results. It is a narcotic and may affect the kidneys. Acute exposure to the skin may result in irritation. It will irritate the eyes, possibly severely. Inhalation may irritate the respiratory tract with heavy exposure causing dizziness, headache and nausea. Prolonged exposure may cause kidney damage. Ingestion will irritate the gastrointestinal tract, bladder and kidneys and may cause headache, dizziness and nausea. The results may be fatal. HANDLING and GENERAL PRECAUTIONS
Avoid skin and eye contact.
Avoid inhalation or ingestion.
Keep away from heat or naked flames.
Can induce an allergic response in sensitised individuals.
Do not store close to strong oxidants.
Exposure limits have not been established for cedarwood oil, however it should always be handled in a well ventilated area. If exposure levels are expected to be high use a respirator. Wear protective clothing. A long sleeved laboratory coat or gown, rubber gloves, safety goggles and a face mask as a minimum standard. Neoprene or nitrile gloves should be used.
Skin ­ remove contaminated clothing and shoes, immediately 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 advice. 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 persists seek medical advice.
Inhalation ­ remove immediately to fresh air. If the patient is experiencing a breathing difficulty give oxygen. Keep warm and allow to rest and seek immediate medical attention.
Ingestion ­ wash the mouth with water, do not induce vomiting but immediately seek medical attention.
Store in a cool, dry atmosphere away from heat or naked flames. Store away from strong oxidants.
Rubber gloves, face shield and laboratory coat. Have an all purpose canister respirator available.
A gas leak - keep the concentration of the gas below the explosive mixture range by forced ventilation. Remove the tank to an open area and allow dissipation to the atmosphere. Attempt to cap the valve outlet and return the tank to the supplier.
A liquid - absorb on paper. Evaporate in an iron pan in a flame proof fume hood then burn the paper.
A solid - sweep on to paper and place in an iron pan in a fume hood. Burn the paper and compound.
A gas - pipe the gas into an incinerator or lower into a pit and allow to burn.
A liquid - atomise into an incinerator. Combustion may be improved by mixing with a more flammable solvent.
A solid - make up packages in paper or other flammable material. Burn in the incinerator. Or the solid may be dissolved in a flammable solvent and sprayed into a fire chamber.


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