Storage of Waste Flammable Substances

by Jamie McPhie


June 28, 2018


Storage of Waste Flammable Substances

Storage of Waste Flammable Substances

Being motor-trade health and safety specialists we deal a lot with the storage of waste flammable substances, we tend to pick up on common issues that all of our clients face. It is our aim to pick up on these hazards and offer best practice and reasonable solutions to help keep your staff and business safe!

In an ideal world, there would be no hazardous materials or processes used whilst at work; however, realistically we know - particularly in the motor vehicle repair industry - that this just isn’t possible. Nonetheless, what we can do is manage hazards in order to minimise the risk as much as possible. Recently we have been looking at the storage of waste flammable substances on premises and, in particular, waste flammables that are stored on site awaiting collection.

We all know that fire is relentless, and if not controlled can destroy property and families in seconds. Because of this we not only want to avoid a fire from starting full stop, but, if a fire does start we want to ensure that there are as many control measures in place as possible to limit the spread of fire, and therefore the damage caused. One of the control measures that can be put in place is safe storage of waste flammable substances. During recent visits it has been noted that waste flammables such as mixed fuels, waste thinner etc are stored inside the premises, with no lids or means of safely pouring flammable substances into the containers. This clearly poses a high risk of further damage in the event.

electric and hybrid vehicle safety blog
electric and hybrid vehicle safety blog
electric and hybrid vehicle safety blog

So... how should waste flammable substances be stored?

Unfortunately in the motor vehicle repair industry, it is inevitable that waste flammable substances are produced and stored as part of the processes undertaken. However, below is a list of things that can be done to make your site safer.

  • Use suitable containers that are lidded when not in use.
  • Provide suitable means of decanting flammable substances into containers.
  • Increase collections to minimise the amount of waste flammables stored on site.
  • Store containers externally, in a secured area, ideally in suitable flammables cabinets or in a lockable cage on bunded trays (double the capacity of the containers and shielded from the elements)
  • If external storage is not possible, a suitable area should be designated for flammable storage (away from sources of ignition and fire escape routes) kept in suitable flammables lockers and spill kits/procedures should be available to deal with any spillages.

By following the above steps this can prevent a fire from starting or limit the damage caused in the event of a fire. If you have any questions or queries regarding this article or any other health and safety related issue then please get in touch with a member of our team and we will be glad to assist.

electric and hybrid vehicle safety blog
electric and hybrid vehicle safety blog