In fires and fire tests the cabinets work well but because steel is conductive of heat (offset by the 40mm air gap between two skins), they cannot be given a formal fire rating.
Under the ‘Location of class 3.1 Hazardous Substances – HSNO code of practice 57’ under part 2.5.2 ‘General requirements for storage cabinets’, it states the following.
- The capacity of each container in the storage cabinet must be 20 litres or less
- The aggregate quantity of Class 3.1A, 3.1B or 3.1C hazardous substance in each storage cabinet must be 250 litres or less.
Under the ‘Location of class 3.1 Hazardous Substances - HSNO code
of practice 57’ under part 2.5.1 ‘Storage Cabinet Construction’, it states the following.
- The inner base of the cabinet must form a liquid-tight secondary-containment system at least 150mm deep, and must be designed to prevent the secondary containment system from being used as a storage space.
Under the ‘Location of class 3.1 Hazardous Substances - HSNO code of practice 57’ under part 2.5.5 ‘Ventilation of storage cabinets’, it states the following.
“Ventilation for storage cabinets is not required by code for fire protection purposes. However, where ventilation is installed, it shall be designed so that:
- Vapours are prevented from escaping into any room
- Any ventilation exhaust shall be to the outside atmosphere and in a location which allows safe dispersal of vapours as is away from any ignition sources
Under the NZ Gazette Notice No 35: Schedule 10: Part 2: Clause 11, it states:
- The aggregate capacity of cabinets shall not be greater than:
- (i) 850L per 250m2 on a ground floor area; or
- (ii) 250L per 250m2 on other floors
The answer is anywhere so long as it is ‘electrically zoned’.
The current Australian / New Zealand standards for storing Dangerous Goods are as follows:
- AS 1940: The storage and handling of flammable and combustible liquids
- AS 2243.2: Safety in Laboratories, Chemical aspects
- AS 2243.10: Safety in Laboratories, Storage of chemicals
- AS 2714: The storage and handling of organic peroxides
- AS 3780: The storage and handling of corrosive substances
- AS 4236: The storage and handling of oxidising agents
- AS/NZS 4452: The storage and handling of toxic substances
- AS/NZS 5026: The storage and handling of Class 4 dangerous goods
A question we are frequently asked is, does my Chemshed Flammable Cabinet or Chemshed Gas Cylinder Store need to be earthed? The short answer is no – earthing is not normally required.
Earthing refers to letting electricity ‘escape’ from a cabinet if it becomes live. To do this the cabinet would need to be connected to the ground, this would protect the cabinet from electric shocks and discharges. As it is unlikely a Chemshed Flammable Cabinet would be connected to an electrical circuit (and therefore is unlikely to be ‘live’), earthing is not normally required.
Bonding is the term used when connecting metallic items not designed to carry electricity. As a storage cabinet, or cage, is unlikely to make contact with a piece of metal with another potential and thus become ‘live’ (from the difference in potential) – bonding is not normally required.
It should be noted that under regulations 10.11 10.11(2), 10.13(6), 10.17(5) and 10.19(5) of the HS Regulations, any permanently fixed containers must be earthed and bonded – above threshold quantities.
For further information please refer to the WorkSafe website.