It is easy to forget the essence of routine safety when 90% of your business involves the procurement and use of specialty gases. However, it is important to note that while you may be used to handling these gases regularly, they are still dangerous and can cause harm even to the most experienced person. Also, note, a majority of specialty gas-related incidents and injuries often occur during the handling and transportation of gas handling equipment. Therefore, the key to ensuring you and each staff member within your company are safe is always to prioritize safety handling routines and procedures. In that light, here are some key safety tips that you should keep in mind when working with specialty gas handling equipment.
Gas Equipment Safety Tips
Specialty gases are a key part of industries such as health, RandD, and many others. However, it’s important that we not forget they can create explosive, flammable, oxygen-deficient, corrosive, and hazardous environments. So while you are handling any specialty gas equipment ensure;
You and Your Staff are Aware of the Gas Weight
Before you transport or handle any gas handling equipment, make sure you know the weight of the gas it contains. This helps you determine whether the natural gas in it is heavier or lighter than air. As a result, it becomes easier to determine how a potential leak can travel to an ignition source and, consequently, choose the right position for the natural gas monitoring equipment. Therefore, make sure each of your staff know how to determine the weight of the specialty gas.
But besides the weight, always ensure you know the contents of that particular equipment you are handling.
You Put on Protective Gear
Accidents are inevitable, and we never know when they will happen. Therefore, regardless of how experienced you may be in handling specialty gases and equipment, always put on your protective gear such as flame-retardant clothing, gloves, and safety shoes. Ensure you have your safety glasses on when working with compressed specialty gas regulators, cylinders, or any other equipment. In a nutshell, adhere to the environment gas standards when it comes to safety and ensures your employees do too.
The Equipment is Secured
it is also important to ensure that each gas handling equipment, be it a disposable calibration gas cylinder or a regulator is well-secured whether in use or storage. This is essential as it helps prevent tipping incidents that might cause explosions or exposure to highly hazardous natural gases. Use chains, brackets, or chains to secure them.
You have an A-Rated Fire Extinguisher on Site
Again, accidents are inevitable. So it’s wise to be prepared for when they occur. That said, always ensure there is an A-rated fire extinguisher for flammable liquids on site. This is especially important in areas where the specialty gases are stored. Even though such extinguishers may not put out the gas fire completely, they help slow its progress so everyone can vacate the premise safely and also call for emergency firefighting services.
Nonetheless, having the best fire extinguisher will be of no good to you if you or your employees do not know how to use it. Therefore, ensure everyone working within that environment knows how to use these extinguishers.
You Avoid Gas Handling Equipment Contamination
Contamination puts you and everyone within the working premise at risk. Therefore, work towards avoiding it by always returning the gas handling equipment to the specialty gas supplier with at least 25 psi of pressure. Also, avoid handling gas equipment with oily gloves. Contaminating the surface with oil or grease is dangerous. On top of that, never try to conceal contamination from the supplier as this only puts you in more danger. Instead, alert the supplier of any damage, arc burns, or contamination that might have occurred to the equipment while you were handling it.
You Separate Empty and Full Gas Equipment
Connecting to an empty cylinder is quite dangerous and slows down the process. Therefore, always make sure you keep the empty equipment separate from the full.
You Keep Gas Equipment from Water
Ensure you store gas handling equipment away from locations with or where freestanding water may collect as this causes advanced corrosion and as a result, increases the likelihood of an explosion.