ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences



ERYTHROSIN B (Colour Index No. 45430(C20H6O5I4Na2)

Erythrosin N, erythrosin JN, pyrosin B, eosin J, iodoeosin B, dianthine B, acid red 51, tetraiodofluorescein sodium salt, erythrosin bluish.
Brown powder which forms a red solution in water. Xanthene group of dyes.
Heating produces toxic fumes of iodides and sodium oxide.
This substance is a skin, eye and mucous membrane irritant and is believed to be harmful if inhaled or ingested. Although no data is available about the affects of inhalation or ingestion in humans animal experiments have shown that erythrosin B causes central nervous system depression and is highly toxic when given intra-peritoneally or intravenously. It can be absorbed into the body by inhalation or ingestion. Prolonged skin contact may cause dermatitis. Erythrosin B is used as a food colouring.
Avoid skin and eye contact.
Avoid inhalation or ing
estion of the powder.
Keep away from heat. Wash hands thoroughly after handling.
Wear protective clothing to avoid all contact with this dye. A long sleeved laboratory coat or gown, rubber gloves, safety goggles and a face mask as a minimum standard.
Skin ­ immediately wash the affected area with soap or mild detergent and large amounts of water until all evidence of the dye has been removed (approximately 15 minutes). If irritation or pain persist or dermatitis develops seek medical attention. Eyes ­ immediately wash the affected eye with large amounts of water until all evidence of the dye has been removed (approximately 15 minutes). If irritation or pain persist seek immediate medical attention.
Inhalation ­ remove from the area of exposure to fresh air. If breathing has ceased apply artificial respiration. Give oxygen if necessary. Keep warm and allow to rest. Seek medical advice.
Ingestion ­ wash the mouth thoroughly with water and give two to four glasses of water to drink. If the victim is conscious induce vomiting by touching a finger to the back of the throat. Seek immediate medical advice.
Store in a cool, dry atmosphere away from heat.
Butyl rubber gloves, laboratory coat, self contained breathing apparatus and protective shoes.
On skin and clothing: wash skin with a strong soap solution immediately. Rinse well. Contaminated clothing should be removed and cleaned at once or destroyed by burning.
Small spills: absorb liquid on paper towels or vermiculite; sweep solid spills on to paper. Put on an iron pan in a fume hood and allow to evaporate. Burn the paper or vermiculite in the absence of other inflammables. Wash the site thoroughly with a strong soap solution.
Large spills: absorb or mix with vermiculite, sodium bicarbonate or sand. Package this in a paper carton and burn in an open pit. Use wood scraps and crumpled paper to augment burning. Wash the site thoroughly with a strong soap solution.
1 Pour os sift on to sodium bicarbonate or a sand, soda ash mixture (90/10). Mix and package in heavy paper cartons with plenty of paper packing to serve as fuel. Burn in an incinerator.
2 Mix with a flammable solvent and spray into a firebox of an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.
Destruction by chemical decomposition is recommended for dinitro, trinitro and other compounds with explosive potential. Add the material, slowly, while stirring, to 30 times its weight of a solution prepared by dissolving 1 part sodium sulphide in 6 parts water. For unstable acidic materials (eg. picric acid) dissolve in 25 times its weight in a solution from 1 part sodium hydroxide and 21 parts sodium sulphide in 200 parts water. Some hydrogen sulphide and ammonia is evolved.


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