It’s time for another resin safety story, and this one is quite incredible.
The story, by Reddit contributor Inclusive_3Dprinting, describes a gruesome scenario where they were involved in a significant resin accident.
3D printer resin is almost always toxic, and repeated exposure can lead to difficult body reactions. This is an insidious process, as small casual exposures don’t seem to do anything. However, they are slowly training your body to react, and eventually it will in full force.
The idea is to keep away from resin as much as possible, and that’s why we wear PPE.
However, it’s also possible for resin to cause instantaneous damage if the accident is significant, as was the case in this incident.
The tale is quite gruesome, you may not want to read further. Inclusive_3Dprinting wrote:
“Was moving some old bottles to the trash and the top ruptured. Had goggles on, didn’t matter, it just dripped down my head behind the goggles. Pain was intense an severe; and I’m no stranger to pain. Worse than gasoline in the eyes. Immediately in the safety shower.
Sunlu resin, can’t find an MSDS. Standard resin.
I’ve moved over to the eyewash station, and my boss came back from CVS with about a gallon of Bausch and lomb eye wash.
My main worry is if I have hydrolyzed the surface of my eye or not.”
After a trip to the hospital, the situation was stabilized:
“It’s been a long 24 hours. They scraped the top of my cornea off, put on a special contact lens and a lot of ointment. We think the bottle was full of resin waste and MEK.”
Comments on the post were quite urgent, offering a lot of advice. After reading through it I had a number of observations that impact safety:
The MSDS was not available, and that would be critical information for emergency workers. In formal workshops MSDS documents are (or should be) posted for quick access. This is not the case in casual or home workshops. My recommendation is that the MSDS should be found, printed and posted somewhere in the workplace, just in case this type of emergency occurs. In the worst case, the offending bottle should accompany the patient to the ER.
Several commenters suggested putting a hood on while traveling to the hospital. Why so? Because the UV light from the sun might polymerize the resin, making a bad situation far worse. Should resin 3D printer operators have hoods handy? I don’t think that’s necessary, but the idea of covering up when outside does make sense.
In this incident an eyewash station was employed, and it’s a common safety tool found in many workplaces. However, should a home resin 3D printer operator have an eyewash station? Given the risk, it may be something some would consider installing.
Finally, if this incident doesn’t strongly encourage all resin 3D printer operators to diligently use all appropriate PPE, I don’t know what will.
With resin 3D printing, do not take chances.