Acrylic Acid and Diapers

According to recent explosion in Nippon Shokubai Co.’s manufacturing unit in Himeji, Japan, has triggered a concern for availability of diapers in United States. The accident has resulted in one death and 30 injuries.

Acrylic acid is used in adhesives, coatings, paints, floor polishes etc. In diapers the superabsorbent polymer is having acrylic acid as main ingredient.

IMDG Code lists Acrylic acid under Class 8 (Corrosive substances) UN 2218, Proper shipping name “ACRYLIC ACID, STABILIZED” with subsidiary risk 3 (flammable) ; observation states “May polymerize violently, which may cause fire and explosion unless properly stablized.”

Transport is not permitted in unstablized state. Stabilization is normally done by hydroquinone monomethyl ether.

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