Harmful Effects of Polyester Resin

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Harmful Effects of Polyester Resin
Polyester resins can be hazardous to humans. (panneau danger 2 image by John Maldoror from Fotolia.com)

Polyester resins are unsaturated resins used to make fibre-reinforced plastics and nonreinforced filled materials. The polyester resin tightly binds fibres together, allowing loads to be transferred between fibres and offering protection from damaged caused by water, chemicals or bad weather. Typical uses for polyester resin include automotive products, gel coats in marine work, electronics, and blades for wind turbines. Safety protocols must be strictly adhered to as the substance can be dangerous.

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Inhalation Dangers

The inhalation of polyester resin can irritate the respiratory tract. It can also cause nausea and suffocation in cases of prolonged exposure. The substance is particularly dangerous if inhaled in an enclosed environment without adequate ventilation. If inhaled, you should move outdoors to allow for proper ventilation and rest until medical assistance arrives. To avoid respiratory dangers, you should wear a vapour mask and ensure the work area is well ventilated.

Swallowing Dangers

If polyester resin is accidentally swallowed, you should consume plenty of water and contact emergency services. Avoid inducing vomiting as this may cause stress on your internal organs.

Inflammation Risks

Polyester resins should be stored in a cool, dry area. Exposure to the air, sunlight or significant levels of heat may result in fire. The substance should also be stored separate from metal compounds, rust and acids. In the event of fire, use a carbon dioxide substance to tackle the blaze as water may aggravate the resin and worsen the fire. Resin stored in containers that are at risk of overheating can be cooled down by applying water directly to the containers.

Skin Damage

Polyester resin can aggravate the skin, resulting in skin rashes and redness. If contact with skin occurs, you should thoroughly cleanse the affected area with water and soap. You should also take off any clothing that has come into contact with the chemical. Medical assistance should be sought if symptoms persist. Anyone working with polyester resin should wear protective gloves, safety boots and clothing that leaves no skin areas exposed.

Eye Damage

Polyester resin can be an extreme irritant if accidental splashes come into contact with the eyes. If affected, you should cleanse your eyes repeatedly with clean water for ten to fifteen minutes and wait for medical assistance to arrive. Wearing chemical-resistant safety goggles will protect workers from eye damage

Safe Removal

Where a leak has occurred, the area should be well ventilated before attempting to remove the chemical. Protective clothing and breathing apparatus should be worn at all times. Polyester resin should be collected and stored on a salvage truck for later disposal. Like all hazardous chemicals, polyester resin should be disposed of in strict adherence to state regulations.

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