Risk Management Services

A Unit of the Business Affairs Division

Chemical Exposure

Chemical-Related Medical Emergencies

In addition to the actions for personal injury, supervisors of employees who are chemically exposed shall ensure that the following information is provided to the physician at the time medical care is rendered:

  • The identity of the hazardous chemical(s) to which the affected person may have been exposed;
  • A description of the conditions under which the exposure occurred including quantitative exposure data, if available, and
  • A description of the signs and symptoms of exposure that the affected person is experiencing, if any.

Interim First Aid

Chemical Inhalation:
  • If large amounts of a hazardous material are inhaled, immediately get to fresh air.
  • If not feeling well or if there is persistent respiratory burning, immediately call the Arizona Poison & Drug Information Center at 626-6016 for advice as to whether further actions are required.
  • If experiencing extreme pain or difficulty breathing, get medical care as soon as possible!
  • If the affected person is unconscious, move the exposed person to fresh air at once, if safe to do so, and request emergency medical assistance (call 911 or tell someone to call for you). If the affected person breathing has stopped, perform artificial respiration if you are trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Keep the affected person warm and at rest.
  • The American Red Cross conducts CPR classes for a minimal charge. Call 318-6740 for details.
Skin Contact with Chemicals:
  • If hazardous materials get on the skin, immediately flush the contaminated skin with copious amounts of plain water for at least 15 minutes, while removing all contaminated clothing and shoes.
  • Immediately after flushing with water, call the Arizona Poison & Drug Information Center at 626-6016 for advice as to whether further actions are required.
  • If you do not feel well or if there is persistent burning or extreme pain, get medical care as soon as possible!
Eye Contact with Chemicals:
  • If hazardous materials get into the eyes, immediately irrigate the eyes with copious amounts of plain water for a minimum of at least 15 minutes, while holding the eye lids open and rolling the eyes (see: Have You Flushed you Emergency Eyewash Lately? Windows Media format, Apple iOS compatible format).
  • Immediately following the eye washing, get medical care as soon as possible!
Ingestion or Injection of Chemicals:
  • If hazardous materials are ingested or injected via a puncture wound, immediately wash out the affected area with copious amounts of water and if there is a puncture wound make it bleed.
  • Immediately following the washing, call the Arizona Poison Information Center at 626-6016 for advice as to whether further actions are required.
  • If you do not feel well or if there is persistent burning or extreme pain, get medical care as soon as possible!
Burns:
  • Extinguish any burning clothing by using the emergency shower, dousing with water, or wrapping the person in a coat, blanket or whatever is available to extinguish the fire, and roll the person on the floor.
  • Quickly remove any clothing contaminated with chemicals.
  • Flush burned areas with water to remove heat. Continue to flush with plain water for at least 15 minutes if chemicals are involved.
  • Place clean, wet, cold cloths on the burned area.
  • Get medical care immediately if the burn is serious, extensive, or you are in doubt.
Wounds:
  • If an individual is bleeding severely, control the bleeding by compressing the wound with a cloth or whatever is available. Elevate the injury above the level of the heart. Get medical care as soon as possible!
  • In the case of a less severe cut, wash the cut and remove any pieces of glass if present. If the cut is not trivial, get medical care as soon as possible!