Nitric acid is a pale yellow to reddish brown liquid generating red-brown fumes and having a suffocating odor. Very toxic by inhalation. Corrosive to metals or tissue. Prolonged exposure to low concentrations or short term exposure to high concentrations may result in adverse health effects. Rate of onset: Immediate Persistence: Hours - days Odor threshold: ~1 ppm Source/use/other hazard: Used in many industries; Very corrosive to skin/mucous membranes as well as metals & other materials.