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Hazardous Substance Storage Cabinets
Hazardous substance cabinets are a requirement of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health regulations (CoSHH). This is to correctly store hazardous substances. Furthermore hazardous substance cabinets are a requirement of Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres regulations 2002. DSEAR requires risks from indoor storage of hazardous substances to be controlled. This is done by removing, or reducing, the amount of hazardous substances available in the workplace. All employers are required to implement effective controls over the safe use and storage of hazardous substances. Furthermore they are required to limit, where possible, exposure to these substances by the workforce.
Hazardous Substance Storage
The main purpose of using a hazardous substance cabinet is to provide a physical barrier. This is to delay the involvement of stored hazardous substances in the event of a fire. The cabinet should serve to limit passage of hot gasses and flame. The main objective for storing hazardous substances in a hazardous substance cabinet is to give time to safely escape. For example from a building in the event of an incident. Ultimately so emergency action plans can be implemented.
A principle guide is that only a minimum quantity required for frequently occurring activities be stored in the workplace. Containers of flammable liquids when not in use should be stored in a Hazardous storage cabinet. This must be of fire resisting construction. Furthermore it must be designed to contain spills of 110% of the largest stored container. Other dangerous substances should be stored separately from flammable liquids. For example oxidizers, corrosive materials and energetic substances. A dangerous flammable substance may, in their own right be also be flammable. The substances may affect the integrity of the other products if stored together. Therefore they need to be stored in a separate hazardous storage cabinet. Furthermore the hazardous storage cabinets should be situated in a designated area. This area will not obstruct the means of escape for the workforce should it be necessary to evacuate the premises.