Interview with Annie Valorteaux (nurse at Creuzet Aéronautique): ‘Diphoterine® is more practical than water from a visibility point of view’
In charge of caring for the employees of her company, Annie Valorteaux explains how Diphoterine® plays a key role when a chemical accident occurs.
Prevor: What do you do in your company?
Annie Valorteaux: I’m an occupational health nurse at Creuzet Aéronautique.
Prevor: What chemicals are present on site?
AV: We have all sorts: acids, like hydrofluoric acid, as well as alkalis. They are used to process metal parts for the aeronautics industry.
Prevor: Are accidents common?
AV: We are not necessarily informed about minor accidents, but major accidents are always reported. Operators manage minor accidents themselves. We notice this when we have to replenish the stock of products, like eyewash.
Prevor: What benefits immediately come to mind when talking about Diphoterine® solution?
AV: I find the product good, but I haven’t had to use it on a major accident yet. For minor accidents, it’s very effective, between the reaction time and the proximity of containers. We have sprays as well as cases containing all the Diphoterine® solution products possible.
Prevor: What’s the procedure for a chemical incident?
AV: The worker must immediately get the appropriate product and apply it and then go to the infirmary to have the incident entered on the register. They must have a medical examination afterwards.
Prevor: How is healing after using Diphoterine®?
AV: On small areas, it’s effect is very positive. I’ve not had a serious case for a long time.
Prevor: Does Diphoterine® psychologically reassure the worker?
AV: Absolutely, often we have to insist for them to go see a doctor. We have to send them to the doctor.
Prevor: Is Diphoterine® more mobile than water?
AV: Yes because not all production areas have water points. Putting out bottles of Diphoterine® solution is more practical in terms of visibility: it’s directly accessible.
“The only significant cases we have had were due to cutting oils, which can irritate the eyes. We had to use Diphoterine® solution as an eye wash.”
Prevor: Have you had an incident involving the eyes of a worker?
AV: I’ve never had to deal with acid or alkali splashes because workers wear safety goggles. The only significant cases we have had were due to cutting oils, which can irritate the eyes. We had to use Diphoterine® solution as an eye wash.
Prevor: How can we help you improve your safety policy?
AV: Eye washes are always complicated to use because the eye area is sensitive. Perhaps include an eye bath to put the eyewash in. I know you provide training, but we are faced with the fact that employees manage accidents themselves in chemical units. Whenever they have a doubt, they use Diphoterine®. Maybe provide some awareness-raising, we constantly tell them to use the entire container. The containers are not always emptied, despite our recommendations.