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Understanding the dangers of Hydrogen Sulphide

Hydrogen sulphide: More serious than just a bad smell

What is hydrogen sulphide?

Hydrogen sulphide, chemical formula H2S, is a colourless gas smelling of rotten eggs. It is very poisonous, corrosive, and flammable. It is created naturally by decaying organic matter and is released from sewage sludge, liquid manure, and sulphur hot springs. In industry, it is formed when sulphur is removed from products in the petroleum refining process and is a by-product of paper pulping.

Hydrogen sulphide is heavier than air and may travel along the ground. It collects in low-lying and enclosed, poorly-ventilated areas such as basements, tunnels, manholes, sewer lines, underground telephone vaults and manure pits.

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