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Last updated: July 23, 2017

What Does Vapor Mean?

Vapor is the gaseous state of a substance that is either liquid or solid before it reaches its critical point. It may be visible and described as fog, mist, smoke or fumes. Vapors from hazardous chemicals in the workplace pose a threat to the health of workers. In addition, many substances that are not combustible while they are in their original liquid or solid form may catch fire when they are in vapor form.

Safeopedia Explains Vapor

Vapor is produced in a vaporization process where solid or liquid substances transform to gaseous state, generally as a result of changes in pressure or temperature. Generally, if the temperature is gradually increased, most substances change state from solid to liquid and then to vapor or gas. However, some substances may also transform directly from solid to vapour or gas. This can cause issues like fire or explosion depending on the chemical.

Chemical vapor in the workplace is also a health hazard to the workers. Workers inhale vapor, allowing the chemical to enter the bloodstream. Vapor may also cause harm to the skin and other unprotected areas of the body. Employees working around hazardous vapors should wear appropriate personal protective equipment such as masks, respirators and clothing.


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