Homeowner Tips

SAFETY TIPS FOR THE DO-IT-YOURSELFER

PROTECT YOURSELF – Freshly mixed concrete, mortar, grout and cement slurry are irritating and corrosive to the eyes and skin and may cause irritation including alkaline burning and dermatitis. Avoid contact with the skin by wearing suitable clothing and gloves (clothing recommended gives full cover but minimizes perspiration, i.e., cotton overalls or long sleeve shirts and trousers, gloves, face shields or goggles and dust mask.) In the event of contact, wash skin immediately with clean water to minimize possible irritation. If any material gets into the eyes, avoid rubbing, wash immediately and repeatedly with clean water or eyewash solution. If irritation persists, seek medical attention.

Do not breath cement dust or the dust created from cutting or abrading hardened concrete, mortar, grout or slurry as it contains various quantities of crystalline silica which could irritate the respiratory system and may cause bronchitis, silicosis or lung cancer (Quartz or crystalline silica has been classified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer IARC as Group 2A, a probable human carcinogen RTECS 1989). When cutting or abrading hardened concrete and mortar, keep it wetted to avoid creation of dust.

Wash clothes regularly and separately from other clothes.

Manual handling of bagged product without due care and attention may result in personal injury. Unless you have been trained in manual handling of heavy loads, it is recommended that you share the load with another person.

General-purpose cements are alkaline and can act as oxidants. Use caution, when adding to other materials.

APPLICATION – First, you lay a form. Second, you make sure that it is level, that all sides are straight and that the corners are even. Third, you mix up the wet concrete. Fourth, you pour the concrete into a wheelbarrow for transport. Fifth, pour the concrete into the form. Spread the concrete mix evenly. Level the concrete out. Finally, sit back and watch it dry.

SAFE HANDLING – General-purpose cements must be stored dry, away from moisture, steam, acid or acid fumes. Concrete, steel silos or tanks are suitable forms of storage. Transport is normally in sealed bulk road tankers or totally enclosed tippers.

DISPOSAL – Spills should be cleaned up by removing the material by vacuum, shovel and broom. Take care to minimize dust. The area may be finally cleaned if required to remove surface dust by washing with excess water. Personnel involved should wear protective clothing and goggles and face mask.

Carefully dispose of excess product and packaging by collecting for disposal as a trade waste in accordance with local authority guidelines.