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It is primarily used as a solvent (a liquid that can dissolve other substances) in the printing, rubber, and leather industries. Along with other solvents, xylene is also widely used as a cleaning agent, a thinner for paint, and in varnishes.

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What is Xylene?

Xylene is a clear, colourless liquid with an odour that generally provides adequate warning of hazardous concentrations. It is volatile and readily produces flammable and toxic concentrations at room temperature. It’s vapour is heavier than air and may accumulate in low-lying areas.

Xylene can enter the body by inhalation or skin/eye contact.

Symptoms / Effects of Exposure

Inhalation: Symptoms can include the following

Skin Contact:  Symptoms include

Can be absorbed through the skin, but harmful effects are not expected.

Eye Contact: May cause mild irritation.

Ingestion: Symptoms include

Effects of Long-Term Exposure: Can cause dry, red, cracked skin (dermatitis) following skin contact.  May harm the nervous system.

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