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Official policies of St. Mary's University

Compressed Gas Cylinders Handling and Storage (Environmental)

Approver(s):

Executive Council

Authorizes release:

Vice President for Administration and Finance

Responsible office:

Facilities Services

Review cycle:

Annually or as required

Adopted:

Unknown

Last update:

January 2017

Next review:

June 2017

Purpose

The purpose of this document is to describe the procedure to register, handle, and store compressed gas cylinders.

Background

Compressed gases may include acetylene, oxygen, nitrogen, propane, helium, butane, LNG, and others. Compressed gas cylinders or bottles are considered hazardous due to their pressure and flammability, and must be handled and stored to ensure personnel and workplace safety.

Applicability

This document applies to all St. Mary’s University departments that procure, rent, or otherwise handle and/or use compressed gas cylinders.

Reference Documents

  • OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.101: Hazardous Materials / Compressed Gases
  • OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.253 (b) (1) (ii): Labeling
  • Hazardous Materials Regulations of the Department of Transportation (49 CFR parts 171-179 and 14 CFR part 103)

Procedure

Registration

  • All purchased or rented compressed gas cylinders shall be registered and reported to the Facilities Department immediately upon receiving the vessel on campus.
  • The registration form to be used is enclosed in Appendix – A. The minimum information to be included on the registration form is:
  • Cylinder size (capacity): B tank, 144 cu in, 244 cu in
  • Type of gas: acetylene, oxygen, nitrogen, propane, helium, butane
  • Used for: welding, fuel, filling balloons
  • Rental or purchase
  • Disposable or refillable
  • Source firm or vendor: ex. Welder’s Supply, Natwell, etc.
  • Department assigned
  • Building and room stored
  • SDS (Safety Data Sheet) for each cylinder registered

Labeling

  • Compressed gas cylinders shall be legibly marked for identifying the gas content with either the chemical or the trade name of the gas. Such marking shall be by means of stenciling, stamping, or labeling, and shall not be readily removable. Whenever practical, the marking shall be located on the shoulder of the cylinder. All labeling must be in compliance with established SDS pictograms.

Storage

  • Compressed gas cylinders must be secured by rack, strap, or chain at all times.
  • Never use oil on threads. Pressure vessels may be pressurized cylinders, bottles, or tanks.
  • Cylinder must have cap installed when in storage or in transport.
  • Pressurized vessels must be identified as to whether leased or owned by the University and whether they are disposable or refillable.
  • Disposable cylinders are NOT to be refilled or reused as air tanks.
  • Pressurized cylinders are NOT to be placed in trash dumpsters.

Disposal

  • Pressurized vessels such as propane tanks, oxygen, and acetylene tanks may be disposed of by “exchange or trade-in” to the original supplier.
  • If not returnable, follow the manufacturer’s directions for disposal.
  • If not returnable and no manufacturer’s directions are available, the tank must be confirmed as empty, punctured, and the valve removed. Contact Facilities to pick up the cylinder to be disposed.

Transporting

  • Cylinders transported by wheeled truck must be fastened securely in an upright position so that they will not fall or strike each other.
  • Cylinders should not be transported without safety caps. A cylinder’s cap should be screwed all the way down on the cylinder’s neck ring and should fit securely. Do not lift cylinders by the cap. The cap is for valve protection only.
  • Cylinders should not be transported with the regulator attached to the cylinder.
  • Always use a cylinder cart to move compressed gas cylinders. Refrain from sliding, dragging, or rolling cylinders on their edge.
  • Only one cylinder should be handled (moved) at a time.

Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of the Cost Center Manager and Department Head or Dean to:

  • Register and report all compressed gas cylinders or bottles to the Facilities Department.
  • Provide SDS for each compressed gas along with the registration form.
  • Confirm, verify, and report the status of all compressed gas cylinders on an annual basis.
  • Ensure the proper handling, storage, and disposal.

It is the responsibility of Facilities Housekeeping to pick up compressed gas cylinders upon request from departments that have prepared the cylinder as described in this procedure.

  • Facilities may choose to cut up the spent cylinder for scrap metal.

Training

All personnel responsible for the procurement, rental, registration, handling, storage, and/or transportation of compressed gas cylinders shall be trained on this procedure.

Record Keeping

Records will be maintained and filed in the Facilities Department Front Office for a minimum of 30 yrs.

Available in the Administration and Finance Office:
APPENDIX A: Compressed Gas Cylinder – Registration Form / Annual Status Confirmation

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