GAWDA, the Gases and Welding Distributors Association has issued an important helium bulletin in response to a tragedy following inhalation of the gas.
GAWDA, who’s mission is to ‘promote the safe operation and economic vitality of distributors of industrial gases and related welding equipment and supplies’, issued the bulletin via its gas consultants.
The notice offered an urgent reminder, urging distributors to, ‘remind their customers of the hazards of inhaling helium at any time under any circumstance.’
On 23rd February headlines in North America considered the tragic death of a teenage girl who died from breathing helium at a party. In a statement GAWDA responded saying, “The Gases and Welding Distributors Association and the Compressed Gas Association has for many years been concerned with the breathing of helium in order to get the high pitched ‘Donald Duck’ sound.”
It continued, “These associations have released many alerts and communications over the years warning people not to breathe helium from cylinders or balloons filled with helium.”
GAWDA encouraged customers to be referred to the MSDS for helium and to CGA P-9, The inert gases: argon, nitrogen and helium. Alternatively the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition website also offers useful information.