Gas Cylinder Safety

Gas cylinders are extremely dangerous. For gas cylinder safety, it is critical that such cylinders be handled correctly in order to prevent injury and loss of life.

Gas cylinders contain gases that if released suddenly can turn a cylinder into a dangerous rocket-like projectile. Other dangers of gas cylinders include displacement of oxygen, explosions, release of toxic gases, and more.

The following are general safety guidelines that need to be adhered to when working with, near, or transporting gas cylinders. If your company works with gas cylinders, it is in your best interest to consider hiring a safety consulting firm to make sure you have all of the proper safeguards in place. Further, such a firm will be able to provide regular, formal safety training for your employees.

Use of Gas Cylinders

When using gas cylinders, make sure that you are using the correct regulator for the particular gas contained in the cylinder. Always check the regulator before it is attached to a cylinder and make sure the threads on the cylinder and the connection are specifically designed for the cylinder and type of gas. Substances such as gas and oil should never come into contact with cylinders and valves. When attaching the regulator, make sure it fits tightly. Always open the valve slowly. Avoid using a wrench to open valves. If you notice a problem with a valve or regulator do not try to fix it. Instead label it as defective and make sure that it does not get used. A gas cylinder should never be used unless it is clearly labeled with its contents.

Transporting Gas Cylinders

When transporting gas cylinders, it is vital that those cylinders be secured in an upright position so that they will not fall on each other or strike against one another. Cylinder caps must be turned tight and cylinders should never be lifted by their caps. It is important that gas cylinders are never transported with the regulator attached. Avoid dragging, rolling, or sliding gas cylinders as this can cause damage to the cylinder. Instead always use a cart to move cylinders.

Storing Gas Cylinders

Gas cylinders must always be securely attached to a post, rack, wall, or truck and caps should be on tight. They should be stored in a well-ventilated area away from anything that could cause the cylinders to ignite. Cylinders may be stored outside but should be protected from the ground and direct sunlight. Oxygen cylinders, whether they are full or not, need to be stored at least 20 feet away from fuel gas cylinders or combustible materials or by a five-foot barrier with at least a 30-minute fire resistance. All cylinders, empty or not, need to be labeled and stored separately. Full and empty cylinders should be stored separately and labeled to prevent confusion. It is imperative that labels are strong and unable to be removed.

Train. Protect. Prevent