Anhydrous Ammonia Safety

Anhydrous means "without water."' Because NH3 CONTAINS NO WATER, it is attracted to any form of moisture. If exposed to NH3 -- immediately flush the exposed body area(s) with water for at least 15 minutes. Seek medical attention immediately after emergency first aid treatment.

Don't be blind to the dangers of Anhydrous Ammonia! Potential health hazards are:

  • Blindness,
  • Lung Damage,
  • Burns, and
  • Death
  • Wear personal protective equipment,
  • Always have ample water supply,
  • Inspect and replace hoses and valves as needed,
  • Never fill a tank over 85 percent of capacity,
  • Bleed off hose pressure before disconnecting,
  • Stay clear of hose and valve openings,
  • Follow regulations when using equipment,
  • Have qualified technician repair tank, and
  • Use proper hitch, safety chains and Slow Moving Vehicle sign when towing.

Equipment should:

  • be additives compatible
  • meet NH3 codes and standards

Any equipment replacement MUST be made "IN KIND":

  • same materials of construction
  • same specifications

Nurse tank cutting or welding is only to be done by certified welder with R-stamp or Ustamp, or equivalent...if baffle is detached... remove tank from service.

Extra caution is needed when using additives in fill valves to minimize corrosion:

  • flush with additive-free ammonia, or
  • add small amount of lubricating oil after additive.

  • Towing vehicles should be of adequate size to handle loaded trailer.
  • Each towed trailer should have two (2) safety chains attached...adequately sized and criss-crossed to support the tongue.
  • Securely locked hitch pins designed for service.

  • A 5 gallon container of clean and easily accessible water must be mounted to the nurse tank.
  • Have multiple sources of water nearby.

Publication #: 93-132

This document is a NIOSH Publication, Publication date: April 1993.

This bulletin was produced at the University of Missouri - Columbia in coordination with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control, 200 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20201. Phone: (800) 356-4674. Developed by Judy Barnes Oskam, Oklahoma State University and Doug Ross, University of Missouri - Columbia.

This is only a synopsis of anhydrous ammonia safety information. For detailed information, contact your local Cooperative Extension office or agrichemical dealer

Disclaimer and Reproduction Information: Information in NASD does not represent NIOSH policy. Information included in NASD appears by permission of the author and/or copyright holder. More