Dry Ice is multi-purpose and useful to transport food or medical equipment at long distances, or in your home. Do you urgently need dry ice, and want to know if you can safely carry it in your car?
You can carry dry ice in your car, but it should be stored in an insulated container (ice chest) and kept in the car trunk. Leave windows open for fresh air circulation. Never leave it in a parked passenger car, due to carbon dioxide buildup, as it sublimates. Dry ice should not be stored in an airtight container or cooler.
As dry ice can be used for temperature control, transporting food or medical equipment, cleaning, and visual effects, it is important and useful. However, when transporting it, either by vehicle or plane, it should be handled safely.
This article explains how to safely carry dry ice in your car.
Dry Ice Explained
Dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide (CO2) and is extremely cold, with temperatures of -109°F (-79°C). Unlike water ice, dry ice doesn’t melt. Instead, it sublimates (changes directly from solid to gas), releasing CO2, thereby causing asphyxiation or suffocation.
Dry ice should not be handled with bare hands, and prevent contact with bare skin or eyes. It could cause severe frostbite when touched with bare hands, thus always handle it with insulated or protective gloves, and safety glasses, and be fully clothed. Use tongs to handle blocks of dry ice.
Is It Safe Carry Dry Ice In Your Car?
To transport dry ice, you need to ensure it is packed and stored properly. This way it lasts longer would be used in perfect condition and does not harm anyone. Dry Ice should be stored and transported in an insulated container, or ice chest. It is best to use the thickest insulated container you find, for slower sublimation.
Bear in mind, to keep proper air ventilation where the dry ice is stored. Do not store it in an unventilated room, cellar, or boat holds. As it would sink to replace oxygenated air. Do not store dry ice in the freezer, and do not store dry ice in an airtight container or cooler, as it would cause explode in such a container.
When transporting dry ice in a car, place it in the car trunk or trunk bed. Do not transport dry ice in a car that doesn’t have a trunk, like an SUV, Van, or hatchback.
Dry ice should be picked and transported, at the closest time, it is needed. Thus, plan to pick up the dry ice, at the closest time it is needed. If it takes longer than 15 minutes, for the dry ice to reach its destination, then make sure there’s sufficient fresh air.
Dry ice sublimates at 10% or 5 to 10 pounds every 24 hours, which is why it is necessary to carry it in a well-insulated container (ice chest), in the car trunk, with sufficient fresh air, to avoid suffocation or explosion.
Tip: Lining the insides of your ice chest with styrofoam, helps it stay solidified longer. Also, the more ice stored in your container, the longer the ice lasts.
Transporting Dry Ice
Dry ice can be dangerous to transport because it releases carbon dioxide, when it sublimates, which is highly suffocating. That is why it is advised it is stored well and kept in well-ventilated vehicles. When packed in an airtight container or cooler, or a container that doesn’t allow the release of gas, it may explode and cause injury.
When you are done using the dry ice, unwrap and leave it at room temperature, in a well-ventilated room. Keep out of children’s reach.
Always remember to follow all cautionary steps, and be careful when transporting dry ice as it could lead to explosion hazards or asphyxiation.
It is clear that dry ice is important and should be handled properly, for safety purposes ma and to use efficiently. Always remember dry ice is easy and safe to use when handled and transported properly.
Remember to store it in a well-insulated container, and in a well-ventilated area as well. Stay away from airtight containers or unventilated areas. It is best to pick up and transport dry ice, closest to the time, it is needed, handle it with protective gloves, and keep it out of reach from eyes, skin, and children.