CHEMICAL STORAGE GUIDELINES
SAFE CHEMICAL STORAGE
Storage of chemicals and toxic substances is one aspect of the chemical management process, which must also include instruction, proper education and training for handling (workplace and maintenance), emergencies, transportation and disposal. Since these guidelines intend torefer only to chemical storage, some references are provided at the end of this document with regard to other aspects of chemical management. This document also provides some general precautions for handling and storing compressed gas cylinders. Information on storage requirements for a given chemical is usually found on the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), the label, and chemical referencematerials. Together they can provide answers to questions such as: is the chemical flammable or combustible? Is the chemical corrosive? Is the chemical light-sensitive? Once such information has been obtained, the appropriate place and method of storage can be determined. Here are the three golden rules for chemical storage you should always keep in mind: 1) The single most important rule in chemicalstorage is store the smallest possible amount of each chemical. Most chemical suppliers now offer “justin-time” delivery, so that users can order only the amount of chemical needed for a current task and receive the order when it is needed. 2) Use a good inventory control system to minimize the amount of chemicals being stored by preventing unnecessary purchases. 3) Segregate incompatiblechemicals (to avoid undesirable or unplanned reaction between two or more chemicals). Such reactions can cause fire, explosion, or generate toxic gases. For example, acids must not be stored with bases, and oxidizers must not be stored with reducing agents or flammable materials.
1 JULY 2006
SAFE CHEMICAL STORAGE
In the meantime, do not forget to:
Teach workersabout hazards and risks associated with the chemicals in the workplace and about accident/emergency response procedures. Adequate PPE must be made available and employees trained to use them. product stored (no older than three years; see TORIMAN recommendations). should be labeled according to the United Nations Dangerous Goods Transportation Regulation or/and the European Union HazardousSubstances Classification Regulation and local requirements (OSHA, MOL, WHIMS, etc.). The sites should use the signs from UN and EU regulations to identify chemicals according to their hazard properties. in their original containers.
• Flooring in the chemical storage areas • All liquids must be stored in suitable
should be impervious and easy to clean. containers (can, drum, intermediate bulkcontainer). All containers, whatever their size, must be properly labeled. To avoid spreading chemicals in case of spills or leaks, secondary impervious containment must be installed. The secondary containment system must be able to arrest and contain at least the equivalent of the stored volume. The secondary containment system for large containers (drums, tanks) must be able to hold 110% of thelargest container. for cleaning spills are easily available. with fire and/or vapor detectors.
• Have updated MSDS available for each
• Properly label all the products. Products
• Make sure that first aid kits and material • Ensure that the storage area is equipped
• To the extent possible, keep chemicals • Store chemicals in a well-ventilated
area, away from heat source (sunlight forinstance), ignition, flame, static electricity and spark sources.
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CHEMICAL SEGREGATION BASED ON INCOMPATIBILITY
When incompatible chemicals react, a chemical reaction may occur that can increase the hazard presented by either chemical alone. Such reactions may produce a risk to human health, the environment and our business. Such chemical reactions can...