Faster than a racecar, smashing easily through brick walls, flying distances half a mile or more.
Like a torpedo, an exploding compressed gas cylinder will destroy anything in its path. The dangers associated with flammable compressed gas cylinders relate to the hazardous substances in the cylinder and the immense pressure within the cylinder.
Any gas under pressure can explode if handled improperly. Cylinders can become missiles if a sudden release of gas occurs. Several precautions need to be followed to prevent dangerous situations. Here are some tips to store these cylinders in an adequate manner to prevent the loss of lives or property.
- Compressed gas cylinders must be secured with chains in an upright manner while in storage or on a cart.
- Separate compressed flammable gas cylinders from oxygen bottles by an open space of 6 m (20 ft) or with a barrier with a minimum fire resistance rating ½ hour and at least 1.5 m (5 ft) high, interrupting line of sight.
- Spare cylinders should be stored outside the building in a steel cage, on a non-combustible platform protected from the weather. This cage should be locked at all times.
- A non-smoking sign should be posted near the storage area of compressed gas cylinders and must be enforced.
- Where a cylinder is designed to accept a valve protection cap, caps should be in place except when the cylinder is in use or connected for use.
- When moving a cylinder the valve must be closed, the regulator removed and the valve cap installed. Never use the valve cap to lift a cylinder.
- Do not use a compressed gas cylinder if it is damaged or the testing date is expired.
- Do not use a compressed gas cylinder if the cylinder is not clearly labelled.