Cylinders are generally awkward to handle, move, position and then place in storage. By their very design they do not lend themselves to being exactly user friendly. However, companies would be well advised to consider the general implications that the use of cylinders have within the work place.
The first issue is to establish and recognise what type of gases the cylinders are actually containing. Identification and recording of the results should be a part of your risk assessment within workplace safety procedures.
British Oxygen Company (BOC) are one of the prime suppliers of gases in the UK and there is a huge variety of gases available to both the commercial and domestic markets. For example, with the diversity of gases such as cryogenic, liquefied and heavier-than-air compressed gases, it is important to see their recommendations for storage.
Calor gas is also a very popularly supplied product within the UK and a useful source of information has been compiled with the help of the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) that details the use and storage of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). The storage details applicable to LPG has some specific requirements that are important to factor into any decision when purchasing cylinder storage equipment.
So, after having establishing the properties of the gases to be stored and any best practise recommendations, it is then time to look at what cylinder storage equipment is available and the individual benefits that they provide. A good start point is to decide whether the cylinders need to be securely locked away or whether they can be stored in an unsecured manner with free access to employees. Sometimes a bespoke made product might be the answer and in the case of the MOD a mesh security cage was supplied to house cylinders containing a variety of different gases. There are many standard cylinder security cages available so checking their individual specifications is advisable to see if any suit your particular premises.
To give a checklist of important considerations the following will be useful in helping you to make the best informed choices:
- What type of cylinders and physical size/weight of cylinders do you want to store and how many are there.
- Do your cylinders need to be securely locked away or stored unsecured.
- Are you cylinders to be stored internally or externally.
- Do you wish to store your cylinders horizontally or vertically
- Do you wish your cylinders to be stored freestanding or wall mounted.
- Do you wish your cylinders to be stored in a manner that can be mobile ie: on a wheeled base or lifted by pallet truck/fork truck.
Once the above information has been established you can then speak to the industry experts and they will be able to advise on the most suitable of equipment to cover your needs.