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Chemical Safety, and Compliance in Manufacturing

Posted on 20th April 2020

Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) is a law that tells employers how to control substances that can be hazardous to the health of their employees. It’s a way for employers to recognise different ways to reduce workers exposure and prevent contact with the substances. It gives the employer questions to answer about their workplaces, such as,

  • What are the health hazards? 
  • How do you prevent them from harming a worker’s health? 
  • What measures are going to be put into place to prevent harm?

COSHH ensures that employees are trained on how to correctly use the chemicals and making sure that they are handling them safely. COSHH isn’t just limited to chemicals, but also dust, vapours, mists and fumes. All of which are substances that if a worker is around them for a prolonged period of time, these substances can have a harmful effect on their health. The individual and the employers must ensure that they are wearing the correct personal protective equipment (PPE). 

Employers are required to perform a COSHH assessment, which identifies the potential risks of exposure to the hazardous substances which can cause harm. This not only includes substances which COSHH covers but also their bi-products, such as welding fumes, dust from quarrying and construction and gases from silage. This procedure along with the accident book, which shows any areas of concern and for them to fix, to avoid it from happening in the future. 

How should COSHH chemicals be stored?

COSHH is in place to prevent and control the exposure of hazardous substances to health. So, storing it in the correct way is essential, depending on what the chemical is, it must be sorted in different ways. Places such as schools, laboratories, hospitals and factories have COSHH cabinets for the cleaning substances and other hazardous substances to be stored safely. 

Storing certain chemicals together can be dangerous. If they were to spill and mix, it can cause a chemical reaction that produces toxic gases, which can cause whoever breathes it in serious illness and even death. 

Materials such as flammable ones should be stored in the appropriate storage cabinets or facilities with fitted sprinkler systems. The area near these should be clear of open flames, smoking shelters and sparks to make sure that the materials aren’t accidentally ignited. 

Corrosive chemicals are to be stored in specialist storage facilities. The tanks and containers that the chemicals are stored in, must be routinely inspected to make sure that they haven’t been compromised by leaks and corrosion. 

With most chemicals and hazardous materials, the area that they are stored in needs to be well ventilated. If there was ever a leak or spillage in the facility, then the air inside would be contaminated by the hazardous substance. Good ventilation means that there is a way of reducing the concentration of hazardous substances in the air. 

At Parsons, we want to help, by making sure that employers are storing their hazardous substances in a way that complies with COSHH guidelines, by creating bespoke containers and storage vessels. All of which have been manufactured to meet the requirements set out by the customers’ needs with a range of different capacities. 

If you want to know more about how we can help you, get in touch today.


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