WPI Darkroom Safety: Photographic Chemicals

Most common photographic chemicals can be used safely if simple pre- cautions are followed. The following safety tips are applicable to most aqueous chemicals used in black-and-white and color photography. Always read the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for a specific chemical before use.

  • Avoid creating dust when mixing dry chemicals. Use pre-mixed chemicals when available.
  • Ensure good ventilation in photographic work rooms.
  • Protect yourself by wearing eye protection and gloves whenever you work with chemicals. Most photochemicals are corrosive.
  • Use the least toxic chemicals available; avoid cyanides, heavy metals.
  • When mixing water and acid, always add the acid to the water to prevent violent splashing.
  • Dispose of chemical wastes properly. Almost all photographic chemicals must be disposed of as hazardous waste.
  • Always wash hands after using chemicals and before eating, drinking or smoking.
  • Do not eat, drink or smoke in work areas.
  • Make sure the emegergency eye wash is accessible and in good working condition.
  • Know what to do in an emergency situation. Call Campus Police at x5555, when necessary.
  • The Safety home page has safety resources, including MSDS web site links.

For further information, contact the Environmental & Occupational Safety Office at x5216.

 
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