Warehouses across the country can house anything from steel to medical supplies, food to hazardous materials. Each item housed can present its own risk, whether it’s a danger to someone’s health or the overall well-being of the surrounding community. One such material can be the most hazardous and cause major damage: compressed gas.
In 2015, in a warehouse in Tianjin, China, a series of explosions went off, killing more than 50 people and injuring hundreds more. The cause was related to compressed gas and could have been avoided with proper handling. For warehouses that house compressed gas and other possible threatening materials, having warehouse legal liability insurance in place can protect against damage and loss in a number of ways. But before this is used, it’s important to know the handling and dangers of gas cylinders in a warehouse setting.
Warehouses that store gas cylinders should take into account several good practices when it comes to handling them. Using good handling practices can prevent injuries and, in some cases, death.
- When moving a compressed gas cylinder, always use the right hand cart and always secure the cylinder to the cart before it’s moved from location to location.
- If a cylinder is not secured in place, and possibly begins to slip, do not try to catch it.
- Always make sure to properly cap a cylinder.
- When lifting a cylinder up by hand, don’t try to use the cap. Cylinder caps are not made to hold the weight of a cylinder.
- Cylinder cap threads can wear down, making it possible for them to be pulled off and lead to serious injury.
Another important part of keeping a warehouse safe from compressed gas is proper storage. All compressed gas cylinders in service or in storage have to be secured, no questions asked. This can be done by chain or strap to prevent falling or rolling around. Gas suppliers and distributors typically have something called nesting of cylinders in their warehouses. This is when cylinders have three points of contact with either wall or other gas cylinders. Essentially, this ups the stability and security of storage.
Keeping It Clean
Since gas cylinders can become hazardous, it’s important that the surrounding area as a whole is kept clean & clear of clutter. Common cylinders can weigh as little as 5 pounds and as much as 200 pounds. No matter the size, they all pose a hazard and should be treated equally. Remember to keep areas clean when working with gas cylinders, and look for things like uneven flooring in loose rugs. Always keep an eye out for spilled liquids too, such as oil and water.
Different types of gases different kinds of hazards. For instance, if you’re working with carbon dioxide, it’s important to have an alarm installed due to the potential oxygen displacement. It’s also vital to be in touch with the manufacturer of the compressed gas cylinders to learn more about the specific hazards and to be up to date on the risks and how to handle them.
About Newman Crane & Associates Insurance
Deciding what coverage you need and what limits and deductibles make the most sense can be tricky. Since 1965, Newman Crane & Associates Insurance has been helping Central Floridians make sense of their options and make the smartest choices for their circumstances. Whether you need Warehouse Insurance or any other type of business or personal coverage, we encourage you to contact our friendly, experienced, and capable team today. Call us at (407) 859-3691 for a consultation.