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Storage of dangerous or hazardous materials in the warehouse

Storage of dangerous or hazardous materials in warehouse

The hazardous materials mean material which may be flammable, explosive, poisonous or toxic in nature harmful to human being and environment. e.g.Petrol, chemical, Ammunition & Fireworks. Insecticides. Acid alkaline

Storage of hazardous materials

You need to assess the risks of storing and handling dangerous substances – including the possibility of environmental damage caused by leaks and spills. 

Precautions for storage of hazards good-:

  •  storing chemicals according to the manufacturer’s instructions on the safety data sheet

  • keeping the minimum quantity of hazardous substances necessary 

  • storing incompatible substances separately

  • taking steps to prevent release or leakage of dangerous substances

  • keeping a spill kit near to storage areas, and ensuring staff are trained in what to do in the event of a spill

  • cleaning up any leaks or spills that occur

  • using appropriate precautions when handling substances – for example, wearing protective clothing or ensuring adequate ventilation

  • ensuring employees who store and handle dangerous substances are properly trained

  • checking containers used for short-term storage are properly labeled

If you store chemicals or dangerous substances that could create a fire or explosion, you must also comply with the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002. Ensure that flammable substances are correctly stored in suitable containers and are not stored near to a source of ignition such as a heater.

It’s also best practice to: 

  • place stores of liquid above ground where they’re unlikely to be damaged, e.g. away from traffic routes

  • avoid overfilling containers

  • supervise deliveries

  • maintain gauges, valves and pipe work

  • monitor oil use – unexpectedly high use may indicate a leak

  • have procedures for dealing with emergency leakages

  • use a secondary containment system such as a drip tray or bund (a storage area designed to prevent liquids escaping

Storage of fuel and gas cylinder

All cylinders must be stored vertical, top up across the upper half the cylinder but below the shoulder. Small cylinder stands or other methods may be appropriate to ensure that the cylinders are secured from movement. Boxes, cartons, and other items used to support small cylinders must not allow water to accumulate and possible cause corrosion. 

  1. Avoid corrosive chemicals including salt and fumes – keep away from direct sunlight and keep objects away that could fall on them

  2. Cylinders that contain fuel gases whether full or empty must be stored away from oxidizer cylinders at a minimum of 20 feet. In the event they are stored together, they must be separated by a wall 5 feet high with a fire resistive barrier of at least one half hour. If the cylinders are stored inside the area must be fully sprinkled. Examples of oxidizers are fluorine, nitrogen oxide, and nitrogen dioxide. Examples of fuel gases are hydrogen and propane

  3. Flammable compressed gas cylinders stored inside of buildings must be stored at least 20 feet from flammable and combustible liquids and easily ignited materials such as wood, paper, oil, and grease.

  4. Toxic gas cylinders must be stored separately in well ventilated fully sprinklered areas. Separation distance between toxic gas cylinders and fuel gases must be 20 feet or a mounted non combustible partition extending the full height and width of the cylinders it separates. Ventilation rates must be maintained per ESH Manual Chapter 13.2. 

  5. Storage areas for compressed gas cylinders must not contain any unnecessary combustible materials or uncontrolled ignition sources.

  6. All cylinders must be stored with valve cover caps, if so equipped

  7. Storage cylinders must be segregated into “FULL” or “EMPTY” groups at locations or in racks for each category.

  8. Flammable gas cylinders whether full or empty must not be located near an exit or any location which could block an exit

  9. All cylinders whether full or empty must comply with NFPA and DOT labeling requirements and OSHA hazard communication requirements. Contents of cylinders should be readily identifiable during inspection. A materials safety data sheet (msds) must be available for all gases and gas mixtures.

  10. There must be adequate space for personnel and carts to allow delivery and removal of cylinders. Floor surfaces must be in good condition. Cylinders that are moved to allow access to other cylinders must be secured to prevent accidental falling or damage

Storage of Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials must be stored based on their compatibility, not simply in alphabetical order. 

Store materials of the same hazard together 

I.e. flammable with flammables and oxidizer with oxidizers.  

Hazardous substances should be stored in an orderly manner with older products most accessible and the newer products least accessible

Good housekeeping must be practiced in areas where hazardous products are stored.

All hazardous materials must be properly labeled including their exact contents, hazardous properties, date of receipt, and if appropriate, date of expiration.

Hazardous substances should be stored in original containers in which they were packaged at the manufacturing plant. If this is not practical, these products should be transferred according to manufacturers’ recommendations into containers that are constructed to withstand the effects of the product over the maximum storage time. 

Incompatible materials must not be stored such that they may come in contact with each other.

If incompatible materials are allowed to mix dangerous conditions will result. Combining these materials may result in the following: 

  • heat or pressure;

  • fire or explosion; 

  • violent reaction;

  • toxic dusts, mists, vapors, or gases; 

  • Flammable vapors or gases. 

In the case of warehouse the difficulties that the fire personals may have to encounter will be

  1. Large volumes of material involve maximum possible change of collapse of building

  2. In adequacy of water supply

  3. Change of spreading fire to adjoining warehouse etc

Classification of a Hazardous Material:-

Hazardous materials may generally be assigned to one or more of the following classifications.

  1. Flammable liquid – any liquid having a flash point below 1000F (37.80C); i.e., at 1000F or less the Combustible liquid- any liquid having a flash point between 100 and 2000F (37.8- 93.30C). liquid produces enough vapors to ignite if exposed to an ignition source

  2.  Flammable solid – a substance that can cause a fire through friction, absorption of moisture or spontaneous chemical changes and, when ignited, will burn so vigorously that it creates a hazard

  3. Oxidizer – a substance that readily yields oxygen or other electron acceptor to stimulate the combustion of organic matter (fuel).

  4. Corrosive – a liquid that corrodes steel (SAE 1020) at a rate greater than 6.35 mm (0.250 in.) at a test temperature of 1300F (550C) or has a pH less than 2 or greater than 12.5

  5. Organic Peroxide – an organic compound containing the chemical bond -0-0- (oxygen joined to oxygen).

  6. Poison – a substance so toxic that it presents a risk to life or health.
  7. Explosive- any chemical compound, mixture or device that reacts or decomposes with substantial instantaneous release of gas and heat.

  8. Compressed Gas – a substance in gas or liquid form contained in a vessel under pressure. This includes cylinders, lecture bottles, and aerosol cans. These substances may be flammable, non-flammable, or poisonous.

  9. Cryogenics – substances which are extremely cold such as liquid nitrogen, liquid helium and dry ice. These substances may also become asphyxiation hazards if spilled in nonventilated areas. 

  10. Radioactive – any material having a specific activity greater than 0.002 microcuries per gram (uCi/g). See FSU Radiation Safety Manual for use of radioactive materials. 

  11. Biomedical – tissues, organs, and blood from humans and primates. Sryinges, needles, sharps



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