The Importance of a HAZCAB Steel Cabinet for Storage of Hazardous Materials
A hazardous steel cabinet is specifically designed to store products that are hazardous such as chemical, corrosive, or toxic, environmentally dangerous, and flammable products. Such a steel facility has perforated panels, stainless-steel drip trays, and flat surfaces. The cabinet is usually yellow powder-coated for easy identification as the hazardous storage facility. It is also lockable to protect against unauthorised access. The perforated panels allow for the dissipation of fumes to prevent a gas build-up and the risk of an explosion, fire, or injury as the result of gas inhalation upon the opening of the doors.
The trays are made from stainless steel, preventing corrosion of the shelves as the result of acids or other corrosive materials stored in the cabinet. These shelves feature drip-tray designs to prevent liquid from dripping over the edges of the shelves.
Made from thick, industry-standard cold rolled-steel with yellow epoxy coating, the facility provides for a safe and secure environment for storage of dangerous substances. The necessary safety and warning signs can be applied to make the storage unit easily identifiable.
Why Must the Workplace Have a Hazardous Steel Cabinet?
Any workplace where hazardous materials are stored must have an appropriate storage unit that is fitted with suitable signs. The signs and colour of the cupboard serve to identify it as a storage unit for such substances. The cabinet is designed to reduce the risk of fires, explosions, accidental usage, as well as self-reacting products getting into the wrong hands. This type of storage facility is appropriate for storage of lab chemicals in a school, cleaning products for an office building, and hazardous materials in an industrial setting. Safety must come first, and that’s why a steel cabinet designed specifically for the storage of dangerous products is essential for any workplace.
Why Not Store the Products in Any Cabinet?
Many of the hazardous materials that need to be stored are corrosive and can thus cause unprotected or incorrectly coated steel from corroding. The steel must be thick enough to protect the products from environmental influences. Perforated panels are essential to prevent fume build-up in the cabinet, as explained earlier. The storage facility must also be lockable to prevent children at a school from opening it and using dangerous products. The shelves must be drip trays to prevent accidental leakage and thus serve as a safety risk for people in the workplace.
Correct Storage of Dangerous Substances
With the high workplace accident rates across the globe, it is essential to take proactive steps in protecting workers and users of premises against injury risks. It is thus not just a matter of throwing every dangerous chemical bottle in a cabinet and attaching a sticker to warn of the danger. Some chemicals cannot be stored together. Many types of chemicals must be kept in a cool, dark, and well-ventilated space. Other types are highly corrosive. It is imperative to store chemicals appropriately.
The first step is to conduct a risk assessment. This ensures you understand the risks related to the storage of particular materials. Control measures must be put in place. For such, it is essential to determine the hierarchy of importance in terms of risk management and control.
Furthermore, make sure you understand which materials are compatible as the storage of incompatible materials in the same storage facility can be hazardous. You may need more than one cabinet and should mark each storage unit for the particular types of materials to be stored. To this end, classify the materials to determine which ones can be stored together.
How To Get Information About Appropriate Storage
Use the building manuals, chemical-product labels, emergency plans, and occupational health and safety procedure manuals to ensure you follow correct procedures in storage.
A chemical safety data sheet is useful for information about handling, disposing, and storing hazardous materials. Also consult it for potential first aid and response measures. Make sure you understand the stability of each chemical that is stored. You need to know what the reactivity of each product is before you store or transport it.
Make sure that you know what type of reaction will follow if one of the chemicals come in contact with another one stored in the same space. Create the appropriate containment strategy for leakages such as drip-tray shelves to prevent liquids from spilling over to the shelves below.
Types of Materials
Types of materials normally stored in safety cabinets include, but are not limited to corrosive, flammable, toxic, oxidising, combustible, dangerous when in contact with water, and organic peroxide.
Storage According to Product Classification
Inorganic acids must, for instance, be stored in a unit suitable for acids in a containment unit that separates the inorganic acids from oxidising and inorganic bases. Organic acids must be kept separate from oxidising acids. Organic acids should be stored away from flammable chemicals. Oxidising acids cannot be stored together in the same cabinet as organic acids.
Flammable chemicals must be stored in a flammables storage facility made from metal while peroxide products must be stored on their own in a secondary containment within storage cabinets.
Advantages of HAZCAB Units
Reasons why every workplace, science class, and medical facility must have hazardous steel cabinets for storage of dangerous goods are briefly noted below:
- Prevent accidents: The organisation of chemicals and hazardous products and storage of such in a safe and appropriate place help to prevent accidents. To this end, store flammable products in a flammable protection cabinet. From spontaneous combustions to spills, accidental inhalation, and leakages are among the risks against which storage in the appropriate hazardous steel cabinets protects.
- Proper organisation: An important part of building safety management is to know exactly where specific types of chemicals are stored. Having an allocated space where to put such products improves control. The storage facility thus provides a place for organised placement.
- Keep a record of products: It facilitates a storage system in which the products are appropriately labelled and provides for a place to keep compatible products together.
- Prevent accidental use: The storage unit makes it more difficult to accidentally use an incorrect product as everything can be labelled appropriately.
- Explosion prevention: The hazardous materials cabinet can help to prevent explosions during a fire at the premises. Many chemicals are combustible when exposed to high heat. The stainless steel cabinet forms a barrier between the flammable or combustible chemicals and the environment. Although such chemicals may still react to the intense heat from a fire, the barrier helps to prevent immediate exposure to the heat.
- Required by law for safety: Certain chemicals must be stored in HAZCAB units. In certain high-risk work environments, the safety cabinets are not optional, but rather compulsory. Some enterprises must thus have such units in place to meet occupational health and safety regulations. Firms that want certification for their safety and hazardous materials management systems must have the appropriate hazardous cabinets for storage of specific types of products.
When it thus comes to best practices in terms of environmental, worker, and workplace safety, hazardous steel cabinets are essential equipment.
Where to Buy?
We offer an extensive range of construction and workplace safety products, ranging from castors and wheels to ladders, scaffolding, and industry-standard compliant hazardous steel cabinets. View our products and get in touch for order and pricing information.