Spill Containment in the Workplace
Incidents of hazardous chemical spills in the workplace is something that scares the workers themselves. The first reaction of people within the spill site is to do something about the situation. Unfortunately, this is not the right way to deal with the problem. Trying to stop or slow down an unsafe spill is not to be done by workers because they are putting themselves in harm’s way. There are workers who are daily exposed to hazardous agents, and these workers should be given spill containment trainings to let the workers know the proper procedures in containing spills.
Having the right equipment for the spill containment is the best way to do it. As a primary safeguard against spill hazards, there should be spill pallets and spill containment berms to use. Perhaps the best weapon for this is to make sure that there is proper management of production and storage areas which are the most common places where spills take place. Transportation corridors should also have proper management and maintenance. If there is a way to channel the spill safely into a secure temporary or disaster holding spaces that area away from sparks, open flames, electrical circuits or employees, then the simplest thing that the workers can do is to deactivate whatever device they are using and then leave the area when there is a spill.
External tanks can leak if they are overfilled or when they are deteriorated . The solution for this problem is diking. The dikes have to surround the tanks so that it can collect spills and prevent the distribution of the spilled or leaked liquids which can be flammable, corrosive, or harmful. OSHA recommends diking and is some cases even mandated by the law.
These dikes and barriers are very useful but consideration should also be made for vehicular traffic in the storage space itself. You have to be sure also that the OSHA does not prohibit the installation of dikes near the container, like they do for certain chemicals such as liquefied petroleum gas.
The use of diatomaceous earth is recommended by OSHA to control spills. This is a chalk-like substance that you can spread to stop potential hazardous liquids. This is also a proven technique. Using diatomaceous earth can be a competent option for contain a spill.
There are also chemicals that can be sprayed to the spill through pressurized applicators. These chemicals can stop the progress of the spreading substance. It also reduces the effects of any fumes or it can also solidify the hazardous substance in question. The spills can harden or can change their chemical composition to change its combustibility. It is easier to dispose of the spill if it hardens and once disposed of then the danger is over. What affects the primary edge of a spill to swiftly lost its fluidity as fast acting agents that produce quick barriers.
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