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Compressed Gases

Stories of Compressed Gases

Employee killed when cylinder turned into a rocket because its valve was knocked off Employee suffocated after entering a space filled with nitrogen Facility damaged when acetylene cylinder heated up and exploded Eyebrows singed when lighting a gas BBQ

Training Goals
Compressed Gases and Cylinders in General Specific Compressed Gases Quiz

Basics of Compressed Gases

Chemicals include oxygen, argon, nitrogen, helium, acetylene, hydrogen, nitrous oxide, carbon dioxide, ammonia, chlorine, etc. Compressed gases used in bulk systems or portable cylinders Industry uses include welding, cutting, operating tools, transferring liquids, blowing agents, laboratories, etc.

Hazards of Compressed Gases

Explosion Flammability Corrosive Toxicity Reactivity Air displacing Check MSDS for specific hazards

Markings or Labels
Name of the compressed gas Hazards of the compressed gas National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) labels Department of Transportation (DOT) labels Do not remove any labels

Bulk Systems
Built and maintained by qualified personnel Filled by trained and qualified personnel Tank and piping properly labeled Tank system protected from damage

Cylinder Transportation
Receiving/shipping cylinders requires DOT Hazardous Materials training Use lift trucks or hoists only with proper lifting equipment Never use a sling or electromagnet to hoist a cylinder Never lift a cylinder by the valve cap

Manual Cylinder Handling

Close the valve and put on the cap Do not walk cylinder by holding onto valve stem or cap Never roll a cylinder on its side Use a hand truck with a secure system

Cylinder Storage Area

Dry, well ventilated, protected from weather Away from combustibles, heat sources, electrical systems No sparks, smoking, open flames Oxygen separated from fuels Upright, secured, valve cap on Not in elevators, staircases, hallways, etc. Sign requirements

Cylinder Use
Upright and secure Away from flames, sparks, electricity Keep oil, grease, flammables off cylinders Open valve by hand, if tools required dont use the cylinder Open valve slowly with hand to the side Dont tamper with safety devices

Regulators and Gauges

Regulator and gauge rated for the pressure in the gas system Regulator must be compatible with the gas Do not exchange gauge from one gas to another Thread sealant recommended by manufacturer for application Wear eye protection when operating regulator

Leaking Cylinders
Never try to repair Tag it, move it outdoors, and keep it away from heat or flame Call manufacturer or dealer

General Cylinder Safety

Only accept and use DOT approved cylinders Do not drop cylinders Protect cylinders from cuts and abrasions Dont use cylinders for unintended function such as a roller or support Dont tamper with safety valves Caps on whenever not in use

Goals of Compressed Gases

Compressed Gases and Cylinders in General Specific Compressed Gases Quiz

LPG (Propane)
Liquid petroleum gases (LPG) include propane, propylene, butane, butylene Liquid under pressure, released as a gas LPG containers must meet specific design criteria Cylinders have pressure relief valves Regulated by local fire department

LPG Hazards
Flammable and reactive Gases are colorless and odorless Heavier than air, may build up and explode unexpectedly Adequate ventilation required

LPG Containers
Marked as an approved container Capacity and design pressure Shut-off valve, pressure relief valve, level gauge Never use container not approved for LPG, corroded or damaged, missing accessory

LPG Handling
No smoking, use sparkless tools Fill or dispense outside or in well-ventilated areawear PPE such as glove and goggles Secure to forklift or other vehicle Report damaged cylinders Leak detection

Compressed Air
Flying fragments penetrate eyes or skin Compressed air can penetrate skin, damage eyes or ears Use lowest pressure for the job Wear eye and skin protection Store air hose properly and inspect regularly

Does not burn or explode by itself Supports combustion process Explosive with acetylene, hydrogen Never handle with oily hands or gloves

Flammable Cylinder packed with porous material and solvent that holds the acetylene Once the valve is opened, the acetylene flows out in gaseous form Pressure relief valve using fusible metal that melts at about 212 F

Miscellaneous Gases
Gases such as argon and nitrogen are used to displace air Helium could cause rapid suffocation Gases like ammonia and chlorine will cause large evacuations even for small leaks

Goals of Compressed Gases

Compressed Gases and Cylinders in General Specific Compressed Gases Quiz

Cylinders must always be stored and secured properly Use caution when transporting cylinders Understand the hazards of a compressed gas before using it Even compressed air can be dangerous

1. The best way to lift a cylinder is by attaching a sling to its cap. True or False 2. What type of gas cylinder must be stored away from fuels? ______________________________ 3. Whats wrong with storing a cylinder in a staircase or hallway? ______________________________ 4. Oxygen is dangerous because it will explode or burn by itself. True or False 5. Describe the safest way to manually transport a cylinder: _________________________________

Quiz (cont.)
6. Propane is naturally colorless and odorless. True or False 7. Compressed air can be dangerous because _____________________________________________. 8. Name two things that cylinder labels should contain: ____________________ and _____________________. 9. Breathing helium could cause suffocation. True or False 10. The cylinder cap needs to be on only when it is being transported. True or False

Quiz Answers
1. False. Never lift a cylinder by its cap and never use a sling to lift a cylinder. 2. Oxygen cylinders must be stored 20 feet away from fuels or separated by 1/2 hour fire wall. 3. The cylinder is subject to more traffic, so the risk of being knocked over is greater. 4. False. Oxygen only supports combustion. Even a minute amount of oil can cause a reaction. 5. Use a handcart with a cylinder securing device such as a chain.

Quiz Answers (cont.)

6. True. The odor is added to propane so that leaks can be more easily detected. 7. Compressed air can penetrate the skin, damage eyes or ears, or create flying objects. 8. Cylinders should be labeled with the name of the gas and the hazards of the gas. 9. True. Helium may block the flow of oxygen and cause suffocation. 10. False. Keep the cap on whenever the cylinder is not being used.