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Construction Depot

Safety and health newsletter for the Oregon construction industry

September 20, 2016


Safer alternatives to methylene chloride and other toxic paint removers

Methylene chloride – a colorless liquid with a sweet odor – is often used as paint and varnish remover, a solvent, and a degreaser. But it is hazardous, and can be deadly when used without proper ventilation.

Toxic Paint Removers: Safer Alternatives, a video produced earlier this year by the California Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) program, describes safer alternatives that are available to remove paint and other coatings and explains the events that led to a near-fatality involving a painter who was overcome by methylene chloride vapors. Painting and other contractors are encouraged to include this video as part of their safety and health training programs.

Federal OSHA also released Lethal Exposure to Methylene Chloride during Bathtub Refinishing, an OSHA FATALFacts publication that highlight the health risks involved in stripping coatings from bathtubs.



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