Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Safe Handling of Compressed Gas Cylinders - WSH Bulletin

12 Jan 2010

Fact Sheet - Safe Handling of Compressed Gas Cylinders

Compressed gas cylinders are commonly used in the different industries for a variety of operations. These cylinders are heavy, normally weighing about 80 kilograms each. They are specifically designed to contain gases, such as Oxygen, Nitrogen, Argon, Helium, Carbon Dioxide and Hydrogen. These gases are compressed and stored under high pressure. The gas is released through a valve which regulates its discharge.

Compressed gas cylinders are dangerous because:

• They may contain gas that may be toxic, asphyxiating or flammable. The gas is also stored under high pressure.
• They are usually heavy and can cause injury, such as sprains and strains, if not well handled.

• If the cylinders are tipped, dropped, heated or knocked, they may rupture and explode, sending sharp metal pieces, like shrapnel, blasting through the area.

• The release of pressure from a gas leakage could generate a huge amount of force. It may also propel the cylinder, leading to injuries;

Click here for the fact sheet providing recommendations on the safe handling of compressed gas cylinders.