Microengineering lab Hydrofluoric Acid Protocols

Emergency response summary for skin exposure: Detailed medical response is available in this HF Medical Book published by Honeywell and at their HF acid web site.

Hydrofluoric acid (and dilutions of HF with water or ammonium fluoride) are particularly dangerous, and require special training before use; users must be authorized by the lab manager. Hydrofluoric acid rapidly diffuses through the skin, but has poor warning properties; if your skin is exposed, you may not feel the burn for some time. By the time you do feel it, it may be too late to prevent serious damage to tissue and bones. In addition, death due to hypocalcaemia may result from skin contact to HF mixes over as little as few percent of the body, even with some rinsing of the exposed area [ Brittish Occupational Hygene Society, Vol. 40, No. 6, PP. 705-710, 1996 ]. HF fumes are also very dangerous. Hydrofluoric acid looks like water.