Flammable liquids compliance: 5 quick ways to minimise chemical spill risk 

Nov 18, 2019 Posted by Walter Ingles

Chemical spills interrupt production, place your workers at risk, cause fires and explosions, put you in breach of Australian WHS Regulations and can seriously damage the reputation of your business. In this blog we’ll be presenting 5 quick ways to minimise chemical spill risk — particularly if you carry Class 3 Flammable Liquids. 

Where there is a risk from a leak or spill of a hazardous chemical — provision is made in each part of the workplace where the hazardous chemical is used, handled, generated or stored — for a spill containment system that contains any spills or leaks, and any resulting effluent.  

Section 357 Model WHS Regulations (Containing and managing spills) 

1. Use indoor flammable liquids cabinetsSTOREMASTA Class 3 Storage Cabinet

Storing your flammable and combustible liquids inside a safety cabinet that has been manufactured to the specifications of AS1940:2017 – The storage and handling of flammable and combustible liquids will immediately reduce your chemical spill risk. 

These sturdy cabinets are made from double-walled sheet steel and are manufactured to be liquid tight and capable of safely containing chemical leaks, spills and flammable vapours. The cabinet doors close automatically and the lower compound (at least 150 mm deep) will hold 25% of the entire contents of the cabinet. 

The spill containment system works perfectly because shelving inside the cabinet is angled to direct all leaks and spills into the spill sump below.  Plus, you can make your cabinet even safer by using spill trays and replaceable bung plugs. 

NOTE: For effective (and compliant) chemical spill containment, don’t load the cabinet past the maximum capacity rating marked on the front of the cabinet. 


2. Attach your 205 litre drums to bunded caddies

Polyethylene drum caddies snugly fit your oil and fuel drums and offer reliable spill protection while decanting or moving the chemicals about the job site.  

 STOREMASTA 205 litre drum caddies have: 

  • Swivel cast wheels (for easy manoeuvrability). 
  • Double-walled body (fully leak-proof). 
  • Ratchet straps (for ensuring the drums stay perfectly in place). 
  • Heavy duty Polyethylene construction (100% corrosion free). 
  • Enough space so portable containers are fully contained during dispensing. 


3. Install a Lube Station oil dispensing system

The STOREMASTA Lube Station is an oil dispensing system that safely dispenses chemicals accurately and cleanly — significantly reducing the risk of chemical spills and minimising environmental hazards.  

Suited for both IBC or drum storage, the dispensing system utilises quick connect fittings and the main chemical storage area is closed and completely secure. No more lugging and manoeuvring heavy oil drums around the jobsite.  

STOREMASTA Lube Stations are completely portable with forklift channels, lashing points, engineered footings and crane lifting lugs for safe transfer when the job is finished.  

NOTE: Because Lube Stations are a closed oil dispensing system it smoothly distributes liquid chemicals completely free of contaminants.  


4. Place steel bunds under your pallets, drums, and IBCs

It doesn’t matter whether your flammable liquids are stored in 205 litres drums, IBCs, paint tins, or jerry cans — the Regulations are clear — you must have sufficient chemical spill protection.  

Here are some compliant solutions that offer immediate spill protection for flammable and combustible liquids: 

  • Heavy duty steel bunds with grate, and integrated drain valve  — holding 2 or 4 x 205 litre drums. Steel grated bunds can also be used to store paint tins, jerry cans, flammable cleaning chemicals, oils and solvents. 
  • Heavy duty steel bunds (with grate) and powder-coat finishing — holding 1 or 2 IBCs. 
  • Polyethylene ramps — to easily load and unload drums on (and off) the bunds, reducing spillage. 
  • Dispensing trays which seamlessly fit the IBC bunds — to reduce spillage during decanting. 

REMEMBER: according to Australian Safety Standard AS1940:2017, bunding and spill containment systems for ALL flammable and combustible liquids MUST  be constructed from materials that are both chemically resistant AND fire resistant (like steel). 


5. Transfer chemicals using drum dolly’s and bunded trolley’s 

Many chemicals spills happen when chemical drums and containers are being moved around the job site for decanting. STOREMASTA has a range of drum dollys, lids, pourers and bunded trolley’s that also offer immediate spill protection. Try these: 

  • Polyethylene bunded trolley for safely transporting 4 x 205 litre drums — features swivel cast wheels and steel handle. 
  • Drum dolly with steel handle makes a single 205 litre drum portable — or create a chemical waste station on wheels.  
  • Spill funnels with debris strainers can be attached to both 205 litre drums and IBCs — minimises over-pour spillage while decanting. 
  • Polyethylene lid fits perfectly over a 205 litre drum — sealing chemical vapours and minimising liquid spills. 


Next steps 

Take the next step in flammable liquids safety and compliance by downloading our free eBook Essential Considerations When Storing Flammable Liquids Indoors. It outlines the correct procedures for storing flammable liquids in compliant safety cabinets as well as the steps required when carrying out a full risk assessment on your flammables. Download and read it today by clicking on the image below:  

Essential Considerations when Storing Flammable Liquids Indoors download Free eBook

Walter Ingles

Walter Ingles Compliance Specialist

Walter is STOREMASTA’s Dangerous Goods Storage Specialist. He helps organisations reduce risk and improve efficiencies in the storage and management of dangerous goods and hazardous chemicals.

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