Onsite personnel should follow these incident procedures:

  • If an uncontrolled leak, spill, fire, or other emergency occurs, call 911.
  • If it is safe to do so, the source of hydrogen should be shut off.

The principal dangers from a hydrogen leak or spill are fires and cryogenic burns. To help reduce the danger of fire, hydrogen storage, transfer, and use areas should be well ventilated and ignition sources should be removed. No smoking in any areas where hydrogen is present.

If a spill occurs, do not allow personnel or vehicles into the affected area. Rope off the area and post signs, and also station someone upwind to warn personnel.

The worst-case scenario that could result from a hydrogen release would be mixing of the hydrogen with an oxidizer (e.g., air) and reaching a concentration that could produce a deflagration or detonation of the mixture. For this reason, good ventilation of confined spaces where hydrogen is present is an absolute must.