HSE reclassifies degreasing solvent as a carcinogen

A
powerful solvent used for degreasing surfaces has been reclassified as a
carcinogen by the European Union, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) warned.

Trichloroethylene,
often known as ‘trike’, is now classified as a category 2 carcinogen which
means it may cause cancer. The solvent is primarily used in vapour degreasing
tanks for cleaning metal parts and many users are small businesses.

Trichloroethylene
is not banned and there may be some circumstances where it is the only option
for some degreasing operations.

The
recently published HSE Engineering Information Sheet No 34 gives advice to
managers on what the reclassification means and what action trichloroethylene
users should take.

www.hse.gov.uk

By Ross Wigham

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