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A lachrymator is an irritant that causes tearing (watering of the eyes).

"Real World" examples include onions, tear gas and pepper spray (capsaicin). Some typical lachrymating chemicals are thionyl chloride (SOCl2) and acrolein (CH2=CH-CHO).

Guardian Equipment G1562HTR heated eye wash

Safety Emporium carries freeze-protected eye/face washes and safety station.

SDS Relevance

Certain chemicals may say lachrymator on the label so treat these with respect. Use these only in a fume hood or with other local exhaust ventilation. Goggles or safety glasses are not adequate protection for lachrymators because the fumes and vapors can still reach your eyes directly or through inhalation. If you need personal protective equipment, a full-face atmosphere-supplying respirator is your best choice.

The use of an eye wash can help flush a lachrymator out of your eye tissues and relieve some of the pain/irritation.

Most lachrymators are also skin irritants and/or corrosive. Therefore, additional protective measures such as gloves are a good idea when working with such substances. Section 8 (exposure controls/personal protection) of the SDS should have recommendations for proper PPE.

Further Reading

See also: conjunctivitis, eye wash, iridocyclitis, irritant, sternutator, vesicant.

Additional definitions from Google and OneLook.

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