Developing an inspection checklist for your flammable liquid cabinet

Sep 5, 2019 Posted by Walter Ingles

This is blog will help you develop an inspection checklist for your Class 3 Flammable Liquids cabinets and storage areas. Safety cabinets — like all hazard control measures — must be regularly inspected, reviewed and maintained to meet the requirements of 37 Maintenance of control measures and Section 38 Review of control measures of the WHS Regulations.  

Chemical Containers 

  • Chemical containers are approved for the storage of Class 3 Flammable liquids. 
  • Labels are intact, legible and have not been altered or defaced in any way. 
  • Portable chemical containers are properly labelled and bear the appropriate warning signs/hazard statements. 
  • Containers have lids and are fully closed when not in use. 
  • Containers are not leaking and have no visible signs of cracks, puncture marks, breaks, dents, or other damage. 
  • Containers and drums are clean with no chemical residue or spillage on the top, cap seal, or running down the sides. 
  • Empty flammable liquids containers have been disposed of properly and safely. 


Class 3 Flammable Liquids Cabinets 

  • Cabinet is set on solid ground and is perfectly level. Storemasta Flammable Goods Storage Cabinet Indoors
  • Cabinet interior and exterior has no signs of rust, corrosion, dents, or impact damage (all four walls, roof, base and doors). 
  • Walls are intact and seams have no signs of deterioration or damage. 
  • Cabinet has original shelving and componentry. Shelves are sturdy and fully support the containers stored on them. 
  • Containers and drums are completely enclosed inside the cabinet and not blocking the closing mechanisms. 
  • Doors close automatically in sequence and are held shut automatically (without jamming). 
  • The lower spill compound is not being used as a storage area, and its clear of liquids and spilled chemicals. 
  • Only Class 3 Flammable Liquids are stored inside the cabinet (eg, no other chemicals or liquids, tools, utensils, rags, materials). 
  • The cabinet is not loaded past the capacity marked on the front of the cabinet. 
  • Cabinet clearly displays the following signs and markings: 
    • Class 3 Dangerous Goods label — at least 250mm (nominal length). 
    • Warning placard with lettering at least 50mm high —  ‘NO SMOKING, NO IGNITION SOURCES WITHIN 3m’. 
    • Maximum capacity of the cabinet. 
    • Name and address of manufacturer. 
    • All warning signs and cabinet markings are fully visible when the cabinet doors are closed.  


Cabinets over 250 litres 

  • Cabinet is no taller than 2 metres above floor level. 


Storage area 

  • Chemical storage area has appropriate warning signs and placards eg, HAZCHEM. 
  • There is no evidence of smoking, hot work, or other restricted activities within 3 metres of the cabinet. 
  • Ignition sources, incompatible chemicals, gas cylinders, electronic gadgets and heavy machinery are not located within 3-5 metres of the flammable liquids storage area. 
  • First aid equipment, emergency showers, and eyewash equipment can be safely accessed within 10 seconds of the cabinet. 
  • There is a clear path between the cabinet and the emergency shower and eyewash unit — there are no obstructions or barriers in the way. 
  • Incompatible medical equipment (eg, defibrillators, O2) is not brought (or used) within 3-5  metres of the cabinet. 
  • Register of Hazardous Chemicals is attached to the cabinet and contains the most recent Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for each chemical inside the cabinet. 
  • There are no accumulations of waste, dust, tree leaves, pallets, cardboard cartons or other combustible materials near the cabinet. 
  • Aggregate quantities are at least 10 metres apart and are not exceeded. 
  • Ground floor — maximum of 850 litres of flammable liquids per 250 square metres.  
  • Other floors — maximum of 250 litres of flammable liquids per 250 square metres. 
  • Lighting in the storage area is sufficient, fully functional, and there are no discharging sockets or switches.  
  • There is no maintenance or construction work being conducted near (or above) the flammable liquids cabinet.  
  • Cabinets are protected from impact from forklifts, vehicles, dropped tools and flying debris. 
  • External contractors and maintenance workers from other departments have received an appropriate safety induction and are monitored (and properly supervised) while in the flammable liquids store. 
  • Class B Fire Extinguishers and a chemical spill kit (with instructions) are on-hand. 
  • There are no chemical containers lying around the storage area or sitting next to the cabinet. 
  • Decanting and transferring of chemicals into portable containers is not being conducted in the storage area. 


Ventilation and air quality

  • There are no indicators that the air surrounding flammable liquids cabinets is contaminated with flammable vapours. Eg, strong smell around cabinet, visible indicators. 
  • There are no indicators that chemical concentration levels are above workplace exposure standards. Eg, workers coughing or complaining of stinging eyes. 
  • Mechanical ventilation system is fully functional. 


Other checklist essentials 

Your inspection checklist should have blank spaces for the following: 

  • Date and time of inspection. 
  • Name and signature/initials of inspectors/auditors. 
  • Checkbox or compliance indicator next to each item [YES - NO - N/A] 
  • Details of corrective actions. 
  • Date the corrective action was implemented. 
  • Signature/Initials of operator who implemented corrective action. 


Next steps 

Make sure your flammable liquids cabinet is 100% safe, effective and compliant. For more information, we encourage you to read our free eBook Essential Considerations When Storing Flammable Liquids Indoors. Download and read it today for the next step in flammable liquids compliance and safety. 


Essential Considerations when Storing Flammable Liquids Indoors download Free eBook



Walter Ingles

Walter Ingles Compliance Specialist

Walter is STOREMASTA’s Dangerous Goods Adviser. He loves helping businesses reduce the risk that Dangerous Goods pose upon their employees, property and the environment through safe and compliant dangerous goods storage solutions.

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