In your day to day operations do you transport, handle or store liquids? Are you prepared for a spill? Would you know where to find a spill kit in an emergency? People often comment “we don’t need a spill kit” but the reality is that every workplace that transports, handles or stores liquids needs to have a spill kit.
Whether you’re a large manufacturer or a small one man workshop there is a spill kit to suit your needs. Spill kits come in three main sizes 60L, 120L and 240L. The size of the spill kit that you need depends on the volume of liquids you are handling within a specific area. 240L spill kits are ideal for larger manufacturing plants that deal with greater volumes of liquids. 120L kits are a great option for smaller workshops or dedicated work areas within larger sites and 60L spill kits are useful to have on board when transporting liquids or containing any smaller spills that may occur. They are also a great option for small workshops that don’t have a lot of storage.
There is a bit of a misconception that having a spill kit on site means you are prepared. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Spill kits are designed to be the first response in the case of a spill and poor placement of spill kits can create further hazards in an emergency. People running to find a spill kit is the last thing you need when you have loose liquids on your workshop floor. To combat this hazard my suggestion is to have spill kits placed no further than 20m from where a spill emergency may occur. In some cases having a number of smaller kits strategically located is a far better option than one large kit for an entire workshop. Creating awareness of spill kits in the workplace and their location is almost as important as having a kit in the first place. A spill response kit that sits in a storage room or in the corner of a work shop is not going to be much help in an emergency! Having spill kits in open view and sign posted is one of the key steps to keeping a safe workplace. It’s also important to make sure spill kits remain accessible, and don’t become a dumping ground for tools or unwanted parts.
Next time you’re in the workshop take a look around. Identify where your possible spill hazards could occur and identify the liquids used in your workplace. Once you have identified areas of risk have a think- what size spill kits do I need and where should they be located? If you already have kits on site take note of their condition and location. Make sure all staff members are aware of their location and most importantly make sure they are the first response in the case of a spill emergency!
Until next time, stay safe!