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This course follows Guidelines for: OSHA 29 CFR 1910.

1000 API RP 49 & 55

Objectives of This Course

To Understand The Physical Properties of H2S Understand the Hazards of H2S and SO2 Understand Proper Working Procedures in an H2S environment Understand H2S Detection Understand the Contingency Plan Understand Basic Rescue Techniques
Be Able to put on a Self Contained Breathing Apparatus

Pass a Written Examination

Where Does H2S Come From?

Same Place as Oil & Gas Mining Industry Tanning Industry Paper Mills Water Treatment Plants Sewers Septic Tanks Chemical Factories

Different Names for the Same Thing

H2S Hydrogen Sulphide Rotten Egg Gas Sour Gas Swamp Gas The Invisible Killer

Any More Names You Can Think Of?

Physical Properties




Flammability Boiling Point

What does toxic mean?

Poison! Something that harms our bodies.

Do you understand parts per million (ppm)? If you consider a time span of 11 days, one second is 1 ppm. 700 ppm of H2S is enough to kill you with one breath!

What Color is Hydrogen Sulphide?
You cannot use your eyes to detect H2S.

What does H2S smell like? Can we use our nose to detect H2S? Can we depend on our nose to detect H2S? At 50-150 ppm concentration of H2S, we lose our sense of smell. H2S stops messages from traveling between the brain and the nerves, including the olfactory nerve (sense of smell).

Specific Gravity of Gas Ambient air at sea level is one atmosphere, or = 1.0 H2S = 1.189 H2S is about 19 % heavier than air. Collects in low areas Stacks or builds on itself.




Wind Direction
How can we tell wind direction? Why is wind direction important in H2S safety? We need to be upwind of an H2S release. What if there is no wind?

What do we mean by Wind Conscious?

Boiling Point
What is boiling point? Boiling Point the temperature at which a liquid turns into a gas. BP of H2O is 100 C, BP of H2S is - 60 C Why is this important to us?

H2S is highly flammable The auto-ignition temperature of H2S is 260 C A cigarette burns at a temperature of 400 C Burns with a bright blue flame Highly explosive, even more than Methane

Explosivity Range LEL [------------------------------] UEL
Lower Explosive Level Upper Explosive Level

4.3 % 46 % 43,000 ppm 460,000 ppm 1 % = 10,000 ppm

When we burn H2S we get a very toxic byproduct:

Sulfur Dioxide

Sulfur Dioxide
Toxicity PEL 5 ppm, IDLH 100 ppm Color none Odor irritating pungent odor Specific Gravity (RGasD) 2.26 (air = 1.0) Nonflammable Reacts with water to form sulfurous acid Symptoms of Exposure eye, nose and throat irritation, choking, and coughing, suffocation

Why Burn H2S?

No longer flammable or explosive The heated gases rise and are dissipated into the atmosphere

H2S is soluble in fluids At 0 C, 4 parts of gas can be retained in 1 part of water. (This is volumetric.) At 20 C, 2.6 parts of gas can be retained in 1 part water.

What does this mean to us? How can we get gas out of solution?

Removing Gas from Fluids

1. Temperature Change
2. Agitation

What does this mean to us?

H2S is very corrosive It reacts with metals, plastics and rubber H2S dissolves in water to make a weak acid Can cause pitting in steel Can cause hydrogen embrittlement Can cause pulmonary edema

Hazards and Symptoms

1. 2. 3. 4. Effects Depend on Several Factors Intensity- Concentration Duration- Length of Time Exposed Frequency- How Often You Are Exposed Individual Susceptibility

Glossary of Terms
PEL Permissible Exposure Level STEL Short Term Exposure Level TLV Threshold Limit Value TWA Time Weighted Average TLV-C - Ceiling IDLH Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health

Symptoms of Exposure
Low Concentrations
Irritation to eyes, nose and throat

Moderate Concentrations
Dizziness Headache Vomiting Loss of equilibrium

High Concentrations

Loss of Consciousness


Toxicity Table for H2S

ppm .013 10 15 20 50 100 Physical Effects Lower odor threshold (rotten eggs) Possible Headache (PEL) Mild nausea (STEL) Possible fatigue (TLV-C) Drowsiness Loss of sense of smell in 2-15 minutes (contd)

Toxicity Table (Contd)

ppm 200 300 500 700 Physical Effects Burning sensation in eyes, nose, throat and chest, stiffness in joints IDLH level Loss of equilibrium, loss of mental functions, respiratory disturbance Rapid unconsciousness followed by Respiratory Arrest

Break Time
10 Minutes

Respiratory Protection

Problems Encountered Facial Hair Corrective Spectacles Contact Lens Psychological Disturbances Discomfort Miscellaneous Sealing Problems

Respiratory Protection
There are Three Types of Breathing Apparatus Rescue Units
Work Sets Escape Sets

Respiratory Protection

Use the Right Equipment for the Job!

Things to Consider When Providing Breathing Air

Air must be of acceptable quality Air must be of adequate amount to do the job

Grade D Breathing Air

Quality Requirements
Water Vapor <=/50 Mg/M3 Carbon Monoxide <=/10 ppm Carbon Dioxide <=/500 ppm Oil Mist <=/.5 Mg/M3

How Much Breathing Air

The average person breathes approximately 1.5 cubic feet (40 liters) of air /min at medium work. The same person breathes approximately 5 cubic feet (140 liters) of air per min. at maximum work.

What Does This Mean to Us?

A Five Minute Escape Set will be used up in less than Two Minutes when the user is under stress and performing heavy work.



Detection and Monitoring

Two Ways of Monitoring Gas Fixed Monitors Portable Monitors

Fixed Monitors
Continuously sensing for gas Controller placed for easy surveillance in control room Has fault indicators Can monitor remote areas Has warning systems attached Lights flash at 10 ppm - PEL Sirens sound at 15 ppm STEL

Portable Monitors
Light weight, easily carried Turned on when you need it Can be rechargeable or disposable Monitors where you are working Light goes on @ 10 ppm Beeper goes off @ 15 ppm

Safety Procedures & Contingency Planning

When the Alarms Go Off

Hold your breath, put on BA if available Move upwind of the leak, note wind direction Evacuate to the Safe Briefing Area Alert all persons on the way to the SBA Report to your supervisor Await further instructions DO NOT PANIC

What is a false alarm? There is no such thing.

There was a reason that the alarm sounded. What was it?

What is a Contingency Plan?

Its a, "What Are We Gonna Do, If " Plan

Where Do I Fit In?

I have been assigned specific duties My only duty is to get to the briefing area Everyone has a job to do If you dont do your job, we come looking for you If you dont know your job, ASK. The only stupid question there is, is the one you didnt ask

The Buddy System

When the H2S alarm sounds, you never work alone. Minimum of 2 persons at all times. You always have someone in visual contact in case your equipment malfunctions. Your buddy can get help immediately if needed

Rescue Techniques

When a Person is Overcome

Time becomes very important Rescue teams must be activated The victim must be moved to fresh air CPR may be required Medical services must be notified

Performing an Effective Rescue

You must have sufficient manpower You must have sufficient air supply for the rescuers

First Aid

H2S Solution Problems

If you get H2S in your eyes Flush your eyes in clean running water for at least 15 minutes See a doctor If you get H2S solution on your skin or clothes Remove clothing Stand under a shower for at least 15 minutes Wash clothing before putting back on

First Aid in H2S Emergencies

First Priority is the safety of the rescuer Use the Buddy System Protect the patients spine when moving Move patient to fresh air Use resuscitator if available Oxygen is No. 1 priority

Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation

Tap and shout Open the airway, protect the spine Look, Listen and Feel If not breathing, begin mouth to mouth resuscitation Check for carotid pulse Check for Bleeding Treat for Shock

One Final Question

Do you want to take the test first or put on the breathing apparatus first?