We all know IMDG Code regulates goods which are dangerous (which can harm lives, destroy properties or pollute environment) for transport by sea.
Today let’s look at what is formaldehyde, how dangerous it is and how IMDG Code regulates its safe transport by sea.
In Addition let’s look at toothpaste too since it is our best friend who greets us first in the day break every day!
Formaldehyde is used in building materials, as disinfectant, as photographic chemicals, in morgue etc.
At room temperature formaldehyde is a colorless gas which is also flammable. NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) fire diamond for formaldehyde shown below has following interpretation
Blue (health) 3 = Short exposure could cause serious temporary or moderate residual injury
Red (Flammability) 4 = Will rapidly or completely vaporize at normal atmospheric pressure and temperature, or is readily dispersed in air and will burn readily Flash point below 23°C (73°F)
Yellow (Instability/Reactivity) 0 = Normally stable, even under fire exposure conditions, and is not reactive with water.
As per information available from National Cancer Institute when concentration of formaldehyde is more than 0.1 ppm in air some people may experience watery eyes, burning sensation in eyes, nose and throat; coughing; wheezing; nausea and skin irritation.
International Agency for research on cancer has identified formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen.
Indoor Air Quality information on formaldehyde can be found here
IMDG Code lists formaldehyde as below
UN 1198 FORMALDEDHYDE SOLUTION, FLAMMABLE
Class 3 (flammable)
Subsidiary risk 8 (corrosive)
UN 2209 FORMALDEHYDE SOLUTION with not less than 25% formaldehyde
Class 3 (Flammable)
Certain toothpaste also contain formaldehyde, brushing and clearing bacteria with a carcinogen 😉 don’t worry the amount of formaldehyde in tooth paste is too less to develop cancer. We may have to eat 1000s of toothpaste tubes a day to run into risk.
Image shown of a toothpaste is not indicating same is containing formaldehyde
- What is Formaldehyde… (periwinkleporte.com)
- Love Lipstick, Love Formaldehyde? (greenprophet.com)
- Risking their health while caring for others: Reproductive health hazards of germ-killers [The Pump Handle] (scienceblogs.com)