Managing the chemical products stored in your warehouse

Chemical Products Storage Requirements

Flammables and Combustibles – Includes liquids with flash points < 100°F.

Primary Storage Concern: Protect flammable liquids from ignition.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a flammable cabinet or a flammable-storage refrigerator/freezer.
Compatible Storage Groups: Flammables may be with either Group 2: Volatile Poisons, or Group 5: Liquid Bases, but not with both.

Volatile Poisons –  Includes poisons, toxics, and select and suspected carcinogens with strong odor or an evaporation rate greater than 1 (butyl acetate = 1).

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent volatile poison inhalation exposures.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a flammable cabinet or  containers of less than one liter in a refrigerator.
Compatible Storage Groups: Volatile poisons may be stored with flammables if bases are not present.
 
Chemical Products Oxidizing Acids – All oxidizing acids are highly reactive with most substances and each other. 

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent contact and reaction between oxidizing acids and other substances and prevent corrosive action on surfaces.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a safety cabinet. Each oxidizing acid must be double-contained (i.e., the primary container must be kept inside a canister, tray or tub).
Compatible Storage Groups: Oxidizing acids must be double-contained and should be segregated in their own compartment in a safety cabinet. When quantities are small (e.g., 1 or 2 bottles) they do not warrant a separate compartment. Small quantities may be double-contained and stored with Group 4: Organic and Mineral Acids. Store oxidizing acids on the bottom shelf, below Group 4.
 
Organic and Mineral Acids – Organic and mineral acids.

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent contact and reaction with bases and oxidizing acids and prevent corrosive action on surfaces.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a safety cabinet.
Compatible Storage Groups: Small amounts of double-contained oxidizing acids can be stored in the same compartment with organic acids if the oxidizing acids are stored on the bottom shelf.

Exceptions: Acetic anhydride and trichloroacetic anhydride are corrosive. These acids are very reactive with other acids and should not be stored in this group. It is better to store them with organic compounds in Group 7: Non-Volatile Liquid Poisons. See Section 12.9, Reactives.

Liquid Bases – Liquid bases.

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent contact and reaction with acids.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a safety cabinet or in tubs or trays in normal cabinet.
Compatible Storage Groups: Liquid bases may be stored with flammables in the flammable cabinet if volatile poisons are not stored there.
Liquid Oxidizers – Oxidizing liquids react with everything, potentially causing explosions or corrosion of surfaces.
Primary Storage Concern: Isolate liquid oxidizers from other substances.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Total quantities exceeding three liters must be kept in a cabinet housing no other chemicals. Smaller quantities must be double-contained when stored near other chemicals (e.g., in a refrigerator).
Compatible Storage Groups: There are no compatible storage groups for liquid oxidizers; store liquid oxidizers separately from other chemicals.

Non-Volatile Poisons – Includes highly toxic (LD50 oral rat < 50 mg/kg) and toxic chemicals (LD50 oral rat < 500 mg/kg), select carcinogens, suspected carcinogens, and mutagens. 

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent contact and reaction between non-volatile liquid poisons and other substances.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store in a cabinet or refrigerator (i.e., non-volatile liquid poisons must be enclosed). Do not store on open shelves in the lab or cold room. Liquid poisons in containers larger than one liter must be stored below bench level on shelves closest to the floor. Smaller containers of liquid poison can be stored above bench level only if behind sliding (non-swinging) doors.
Compatible Storage Group: Store non-volatile liquid poisons with non-hazardous liquids (e.g., buffer solutions).

Exceptions: Anhydrides (e.g., acetic and trichloroacetic) are organic acids; however, it is better to store them with this group, since they are highly reactive with other acids.

Chemical Products Metal Hydrides – Most metal hydrides react violently with water, some ignite spontaneously in air (pyrophoric). 

Primary Storage Concern: Prevent contact and reaction with liquids and, in some cases, air.
Acceptable Storage Facilities/Methods: Store using secure, waterproof double-containment according to label instructions. Isolate from other storage groups.

Compatible Storage Groups: If securely double-contained to prevent contact with water or air, metal hydrides may be stored in the same area as Group 9: Dry Solids.
 

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