In low doses, phosgene gas smells of
 freshly cut hay, or green corn.

* * *

Woe were the troubles for a welder one day when his  bright welding arc nearly produced a lethal dose of Phosgene, a World War I chemical warfare agent. The deadly choking gas was created by the interaction of the intense ultraviolet light from his welding arc and a degreaser, carbon tetrachloride, that was commonly used around the shop. Later on that night he complained of not feeling too well. At first it seemed like a common cold, but then he began to have difficulty breathing and a treacherous cough that hacked up lots of thick, spumy mucus. Finally, he was taken to the hospital and it was two months before he could return to work. The welder lived, barely, but his harrowing experience underscores a warning. Could the same thing happen to you? Does your job expose you to potentially toxic industrial chemicals? If so, then don't allow yourself to get a lethal dose like our unfortunate welder. Buy this book, read it and keep it handy: Toxic Chemicals in the Workplace: A Manager's Guide to Recognition, Evaluation, and Control.


Max Coutinho said...

Happy New Year, Swu!

May 2013 bring you harmony and success in all your endeavours :D.

Thanks for sharing this small account and book title.


Conda Douglas said...


A story that was just published of mine pivoted on how mixing bleach and ammonia makes a nasty gas that can cause severe respiratory problems.

Your post was a good reminder for all of us that there are dangers out there!