Date: Mon, 11 Aug 2003 12:30:11 -0400
Reply-To: Ross Williams <rewill**At_Symbol_Here**MAGMA.CA>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: Ross Williams <rewill**At_Symbol_Here**MAGMA.CA>
Subject: Safety Showers

My only experience with floor drains has been negative.
In that particular instance (an laboratory explosion involving approx. 200
ml of nitric acid), the drench shower worked but the floor drain did not.
Having saved the eyes and skin of the person involved from the acid
burn,  the group responding  felt it was definitely preferable to clean up
the water than not have a shower at all.
Post incidence review indicated that, over the years, the drain had become
plugged from lack of maintenance.  Floor sweeping had led to the
construction of a plug of dirt under the drain cover, thereby leading to a
blocked drain.
Ever after, I have always recommended the installation of drench showers in
chemical laboratories. The installation of drains should be done only if it
can be done both economically and properly.  In the end, however, a drain,
once installed, will only work if it is properly maintained.

*       Dr. R. E. Williams, Ph.D.
*       EHS Management Services
*       180 Martin Ave.
*       Ottawa, ON, Canada  K1K 2V3
*       Tel: (613) 746-4288
*       e-mail: rewill**At_Symbol_Here**

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