Everything You Need to Know About Handling 45 Gallon Fuel Drums

In every industry, proper materials handling is important for ensuring the safety of all workers, materials, and products. This is all the more true, however, in industries in which employees are often handling heavy materials with potentially flammable or combustible contents. Following is everything you need to know about safe handling of 45 gallon fuel drums.

It is important to note that it is not a good idea to lift these containers with forklifts. They do not have the correct dimensions and size for sitting securely on the lift mechanism. The level of danger is greatly increased when lifting drums that have already been filled with fuel. Not only is there the risk of spillage, but workers have the potential to get hit by spillage and by falling drums themselves.

Another activity that should never be permitted in work areas is manually rolling drums along their bottom rims. This is hardly the most effective way to mix the contents within these containers. With proper training, your employees can avoid mistakes like these. You can also avoid the steep penalties and other high costs of failing to provide information on the proper handling techniques.

As a business owner, one of the first and most important things to do is to identify the potential hazards in your workplace particularly as these pertain to the drums that your workers will be handling. For instance, you might be using containers that are flexible and comprised of plastic. Unlike options that are comprised of steel, these can be much harder to grip, maneuver and manipulate without risk of drops or spillage.

There is also the potential to have drums stored in spaces that are simply too tight for safe removal. This often causes employees to use unsavory lifting and rolling practices that place both themselves and their co-workers at risk. These units should always be placed in areas that allow for easy and efficient removal, while accounting for the additional size of any necessary lifting equipment.

Another concern among many employers within industries that handle these containers are unreliable floor surfaces. Floors should never be uneven or have obstructions that stick up and serve as tripping hazards or the potential causes of other serious injuries. Moreover, floor surfaces should never be cluttered, nor should they be slippery. Instead, companies should always take care to install slip proof surfaces or slip free coatings.

The shifting of contents is something that people should be on guard for. These weighty movements can throw loads off balance resulting in drops and spills. This is a special issue when barrels or drums are not filled to capacity. These should be carefully marked so that all people can make the necessary adjustments and choose the most appropriate lifting equipment and techniques.

These are just a few of the many hazards that companies should be aware of when using large-sized drums for the storage of fuel and other flammable materials. Proper training is key for preventing accidents. Identifying and mitigating risks that are specific to the individual work environment, however, is important as well.

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