Focus on Specific Chemicals of Interest : Crotonaldehyde
Crotonaldehyde is a colorless or white liquid with a suffocating odor which turns a pale-yellow color on contact with air. It is used as an intermediate for production of sorbic acid and formerly was used in manufacture of n-butyl alcohol. It is formed during fossil fuel combustion.
Other names for crotonaldehyde are:
It is considered to be a Class 1B Flammable Liquid.
Let’s understand the risk it presents.
A little bit of chemistry
CAS 42170-30-3; Molecular Formula CH3CH=CHCHO
Crotonaldehyde has incompatibilities or can react with caustics, ammonia, concentrated oxidizing substances, nitric acid, and amines.
Polymerization may occur at high temperatures, such as in a fire.
It is a colorless or white liquid with a suffocating odor which turns a pale-yellow color on contact with air.
Eye/Skin Irritant/Corrosive/Skin Absorption Potential Crotonaldehyde is an irritant of the eyes, skin, and respiratory tract.
Eight cases of industrial injury from crotonaldehyde exposure were reported.
The severity of corneal injuries was not reported, but healing was said to occur within 48 hours.
No details on the treatment were available.
The European Chemical Agency (ECHA) recommends to label it with the following risk phrases:
Risk phrase / Meaning
H225: Highly flammable liquid and vapour
H301: Toxic if swallowed
H311: Toxic in contact with skin
H315: Causes skin irritation
H318: Causes serious eye damage
H330: Fatal if inhaled
H335: May cause respiratory irritation
H341: Suspected of causing genetic defects
H373: May cause damage to organs through prolonged or repeated exposure
H400: Very toxic to aquatic life
What to do in case of an exposure to crotonaldehyde
The above data suggest that an amphoteric washing solution such as Diphoterine® solution would most likely be of use with acute exposures to prevent or mitigate eye/skin injuries.
In case of exposure to crotonaldehyde, emergency washing with Diphoterine® solution is recommended in order to limit the induced injuries. (lien vers la page diphotérine)
In experimental animal studies, rats did not survive inhalation exposure to 1,650 ppm for 10 minutes and major lung damage was found.
Similar findings occurred in rats when there was exposure to 1,500 ppm for 30 minutes or to 100 ppm for 4 hours. In 113 weeks drinking water studies in rats, some hepatocellular abnormalities occurred and there were some cancers found.
Crotonaldehyde has produced conflicting effects in various genetic assays.
The IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) has concluded that there is inadequate evidence for the potential carcinogenicity of crotonaldehyde in human and experimental animals. It is not classifiable with regards to its potential carcinogenicity to humans.
US OSHA: The US OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) is 2 ppm (6 mg/m3). – US NIOSH: Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health (IDLH) value is 50 ppm. The NIOSH recommended exposure limit (REL) Time Weighted Average (TWA) is 2 ppm (6 mg/m3). – US ACGIH: TLV-TWA 2 ppm (5.7 mg/m3)
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