Businesses that work with dangerous chemicals have enough to worry about, but transporting those chemicals is a completely different story.
Whether you’re moving chemicals from building to building or across state lines, you need to take the right precautions.
But what should you do to make sure your chemicals are being transported safely and correctly?
That’s what we’ll be looking at today. In this article, we’ll be outlining some of the best practices for transporting chemicals on-site and off to make sure you and your team are always staying safe.
Chemical Transportation Hazards
Before we dive into how you can safely transport your chemicals, let’s look at some classifications of hazardous chemicals.
Explosives are substances that can explode when in transport. Hazardous gases are ones that are toxic, flammable, or can cause a fire in some way.
Both flammable solids and liquids are considered hazardous and can be spontaneously combustible. Oxidizing substances can speed up fires or make them more intense.
Corrosive substances like glycolic acid can burn your skin and eyes. Radioactive materials are hazardous to both humans and ecosystems.
When handling cargo that fits under these categories, you should follow best chemical transportation practices. Let’s take a look at some of those next.
On-Site Chemical Transportation Best Practices
Even if you’re carrying hazardous chemicals within your own site, it never hurts to be careful. Whether it’s from room to room or between buildings, accidents can always happen.
Here are some things you can do to avoid accidents when transporting chemicals on-site:
- When you have chemicals in a container, always use a secondary container, such as a tray
- Use carts when transporting hazardous chemicals
- Avoid placing incompatible chemicals in the same container or cart
- Always carry a spill management kit
- Those carrying chemicals across your site should always be wearing protective gear
Off-Site Chemical Transportation Best Practices
When you transport chemicals outside of your site, the risks arguably become even bigger. The number of chemicals you’re carrying is probably larger, and transportation always poses some safety risks.
Here are some safety precautions you can take for off-site chemical transportation:
- Always bring a spill kit with you
- Bring hazmat kits if you’re carrying corrosive chemicals
- Separate all your hazardous chemicals so you can avoid unwanted reactions in the middle of a transport
- Fully secure all chemicals so they don’t move around
- Hire trusted and competent carriers such as the ones here
Checklist for Safe Chemical Transportation
You should always have a checklist handed out to each member of your transport team when carrying chemicals. Here are some key items that you need on that checklist:
Avoid Carrying Food
Once the cargo is tagged to ship food, you can’t carry any other type of cargo.
When carrying chemical substances, your transport team should check to make sure there isn’t any food on their cargo before shipping it out.
Always check to make sure hazardous substances are properly segregated. Poor storage can result in unwanted reactions, which leads to combustion and other dangerous situations.
Load and Secure
This one is self-explanatory, but make sure all of your chemicals are strapped in and loaded properly. Ensure there’s no chance they can tip over or slide during the ride.
Keep a Record
Follow safety data sheets and other documents when moving chemicals around. Read emergency instructions just in case.
Transporting Chemicals Safely and Effectively
While transporting chemicals poses some risks, you can avoid any accidents by staying safe and following protocols. Use this article to transport chemicals safe for your business.
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