Fixed Storage Tanks with Enclosed Pipes for Health and Safety
A company which utilises hazardous substances will have to store and contain them safely in order to prevent an incident taking place which has the potential to put at risk the health and safety of workers, site visitors, people living and working nearby, plus creatures and plants living in the surrounding environment. A failure to safely store these particular substances can cause significant damage to health, property and the environment, and as such it needs to be given significant attention.
Where hazardous substances are stored, both primary and secondary containment needs to be suitable for the task, as well as properly maintained to ensure that they will perform when/if needed. If either are defective, it could result in an incident which can jeopardise the health and safety of people and the wellbeing of the environment.
The type and integrity of storage tanks, coupled with the methods of getting the substances out of the containers, will to a large extent determine the potential for an accident or incident to occur. Not only should the tank's walls be free from defects such as corrosion and suitable for the substances being stored within it, but attention and maintenance needs to be given to both primary and secondary methods of containment in order to prevent contamination of the land, groundwater or surrounding watercourses.
One of the most common sources of leaks and spillages is from the pipes and openings where the tank contents are meant to be released. These will often be the weakest points and will need particular attention in terms of ensuring that there is no loss of contents. For tanks containing hazardous liquid substances such as oil, it will be much safer for the tank to have an enclosed pipe which takes the contents directly to where it needs to be, rather than a worker having to fill up a portable container like a barrel and transport it across. This can be fraught with danger, with risks including:
- Spilling or splashing themselves with the substance and having it come into contact with their skin
- Overflowing from overfilling the portable container and with no bund or secondary container in place the substance seeps into the ground and into groundwater.
- Failing to shut off the tap or valve completely, causing dripping and the same seepage into the ground as above.
- An electrostatic charge whilst filling the portable container with the potential for explosions and fires. Additionally, whilst smoking should never be allowed in the proximity of such flammable liquids, it is a risk if an employee does flout the rules and smokes whilst filling the container.
- The portable container leaking whilst being transported, which not only increases the risk of a major fire if it is a flammable liquid, but can also create a slip risk for those walking in the area afterwards.
- A risk of fire or explosion if the portable tank is left near a heat source or open flame before it is taken to its final destination.
As well as performing sufficient and regular COSHH risk assessments, suitable health and safety training for both workers and management is vital in order to prevent occupational illness and injury from hazardous substances.
Because of the wide-ranging nature of COSHH risks according to the activities of each business, a COSHH open course would not be that practical, as it is unlikely to be totally relevant for people coming on the course with differing workplace activities and hazards. A COSHH training course is much more effective if done in-house to a group of employees from the same company.
We have two COSHH courses that are sometimes scheduled as open courses, but are more often used as a basis upon which to build a bespoke COSHH course which is tailored to your requirements and particular working environment. It can also focus more accurately on the specific COSHH regulations affecting your organisation.
Please click on the course titles below to read more about our COSHH courses.
Our COSHH Awareness training course is aimed at employees who deal with hazardous substances on a daily basis, and will give them a sound understanding of their COSHH responsibilities for controlling these hazardous substances.
Our COSHH for Managers and Supervisors course covers issues such as COSHH regulations, practical control measures, conducting a COSHH risk assessment and maintaining appropriate records.
Bespoke COSHH Training
COSHH training is most effective when run as a bespoke health and safety training course for an organisation, which is tailored to the particular substances and risks that their workers face. Attending an open course which tells your workers to store substances correctly and not to spill them is fine, but a COSHH training course which focuses on the correct storage and handling of the actual substances they use, and incorporates the firm's specific health and safety policy and operating procedures will be much more beneficial.
If you would like to discuss your COSHH training requirements with one of our expert health and safety consultants, please call us on 0844 800 3295 or contact us online by clicking the "Contact" tab at the top of the page.