Pesticides and agrochemicals need very careful storage cabinets to ensure that they don’t become hazardous to people or the environment. This is not only good practice for health and safety and ecological reasons – it is mandated by COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health) regulations and it is a feature of the Health and Safety Executive guidance on chemical use.
An easy way to make sure you are compliant and that you have minimized risks is by using a COSHH cabinet. Here’s our guide.
What are COSHH cabinets?
Industrial COSHH cabinets are storage compartments that are designed and manufactured to meet COSSH regulations, also those outlined in the Control of Substance Hazardous to Health Regulations, 2002. These cabinets should be:
- Constructed from metal with fully welded joints
- Lockable to deter unauthorised/malicious use of the contents
- Leakproof to prevent leaking substances from entering the environment outside the cabinet
- Clearly labelled/marked with warnings appropriate to the contents
What kinds of cabinets are available?
You can also find COSHH cabinets in a range of styles, shapes and sizes. Some of the main variants are:
Static cabinets – these are suited to a wide variety of industries, sites and storage requirements. Place these cabinets in a well-ventilated, flat, stable and secure space or mount to the wall if appropriate (saving valuable floor space).
Mobile cabinets – well suited to industries that require the frequent movement of their chemicals, these models are similar to static cabinets but they are also mounted on sturdy, hard-wearing wheels or castors.
Chests/trunks – this kind of cabinet opens with a hinged lid rather than a front-facing door or doors. Good for larger volume storage and when you need extra security, these models are frequently ultra-durable and extra-secure.
What do you need to consider?
Your cabinet must be able to store all your pesticides and agrochemicals comfortably. You can’t cram them in: each bottle or container must be placed so that it is stable, easily accessed and with the label facing forward.
For larger volumes of chemicals, or a wide variety of different bottles or containers, can benefit from shelves. These shelves are designed with lips and sumps (in some cases) to ensure that any leaks or spills are contained safely away from other substances.
For pesticides and agrochemicals, the standard colour for your storage should also be red. This makes it easy to see at a glance what kind of chemicals are stored within. You will still need labels and hazard warnings on the outside of the cabinet.
Author Bio: First Mats started life as safety matting specialists, but have since expanded to become a complete industrial and commercial supplies company. The focus of First Mats is to provide safety-focused products that improve the wellbeing of staff through quality approved products, backed up by extensive knowledge. www.firstmats.co.uk