Agent Name

Hydrogen chloride

Alternative Name

Hydrochloric acid

CAS Number

7647-01-0

Formula

Cl-H

Major Category

Toxic Gases & Vapors

Synonyms

Hydrochloric acid; Muriatic acid; [NIOSH]; Anhydrous hydrogen chloride; Anhydrous hydrochloric acid; HCl; Hydrochloride; [CHEMINFO] UN1050; UN1789; UN2186

Category

Acids, Inorganic

Description

Colorless to slightly yellow gas with a pungent, irritating odor. [Note: Shipped as a liquefied compressed gas.] [NIOSH]

Sources/Uses

Sold as muriatic acid for a variety of household and construction purposes, e.g., scale remover; used to clean, pickle, and electroplate metal; also used in oil well activation, ore reduction, leather tanning, swimming pool cleaning, and refining of edible oils; [ACGIH] Used as a wet etchant in semiconductor manufacturing at a standard concentration of 36%; [CSH, p. 46]

Comments

Liquid causes second degree burns after contact for a few minutes; [CHRIS] Hydrogen chloride is highly corrosive; Muriatic acid (37% HCl) is highly corrosive; HCl solution < 30% is corrosive; [Quick CPC] Listed as one of "major irritant airborne toxicants"; [LaDou, p. 563] Possible frostbite from contact with liquid; [NIOSH] The following chemicals can release HCl when spilled in water: Acetyl chloride, Boron trichloride, Chloroacetyl chloride, Chromyl chloride, Dichloroacetyl chloride, Phosphorus trichloride, Phosphorus pentachloride, Phosphorus oxychloride, Titanium tetrachloride, Aluminum chloride, Chlorosulfonic acid, Silicon tetrachloride, CHLOROSILANES, Surfuryl chloride, Thionyl chloride, and metal alkyl and aryl halides. [ERG 2012] See the Process, "Toxic Gas from Spilling Chemical in Water." Hydrogen chloride is fibrogenic to the lungs in the context of an acute inhalation exposure complicated by bronchiolitis obliterans.

Reference Link

ATSDR Medical Management - Hydrogen chloride

Exposure Assessment
Skin Designation (ACGIH)

No

TIH

Yes

Ceiling (ACGIH)

2 ppm

PEL (OSHA)

Ceiling(OSHA) = 5 ppm

MAK

2 ppm

Excerpts from Documentation for IDLHs

Other human data: It has been reported that 50 to 100 ppm for 1 hour is barely tolerable and that 35 ppm causes irritation of the throat [Henderson and Haggard 1943]. It has also been reported that work is impossible at 50 to 100 ppm but is difficult but possible at 10 to 50 ppm [Flury and Zernik 1931].

Odor Threshold Low

0.25 ppm

Odor Threshold High

10.06 ppm

RD50

309 ppm

Lethal Concentration

LC50 (rat) = 3,124 ppm/1 hr

Explanatory Notes

Odor threshold from AIHA; The Guide from the Emergency Response Guidebook is for "Hydrogen chloride, anhydrous."

Reference Link

ICSC: Hydrogen chloride

Adverse Effects
Toxic Pneumonitis

Yes

Fibrogenic

Yes

Dermatotoxin

Skin Burns

IARC Carcinogen

Not Classifiable

ACGIH Carcinogen

Not Classifiable

Links to Other NLM Databases
Health Studies

Human Health Effects from Hazardous Substances Data Bank:

Toxicity Information

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Chemical Information

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Biomedical References

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Related Information in HazMap
Diseases

Occupational diseases associated with exposure to this agent:

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Industrial Processes with risk of exposure:

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