Proper Ways of Handling Chemicals
The following points must be taken into consideration when handling chemicals;
- Always wear protective apparatus such as goggles, gloves and a lab coat. Gloves should be worn anytime you plan to use chemicals, to keep your hands safe from accidental spills, and a lab coat, to make sure nothing is dropped or spilt on your clothes or body.
- Identify chemicals before use. Never use a chemical that is not clearly labelled. It could be volatile, especially if you mix it with the wrong chemical unknowingly. If a bottle is not clearly marked, do not use it, unless you are absolutely certain.
- Chemicals should be disposed of properly after use. Never throw them in the trash or pour them down the drain.
In the case of chemical distribution and transportation, there are a huge number of safety procedures to be followed. These procedures include;
1. Vehicle: A vehicle for transportation of chemicals must be a tanker. Transport equipment includes tanks and tank containers.
2. Stacking: It is important how containers of chemicals are stacked. The number of containers that can be placed on top of each other, should be indicated by the manufacturer.
3. Safety equipment: Safety equipment such as fire extinguishers and hydrants must be available.
4. Storage: Chemicals should be stored in a cool dry place.
5. Avoid transporting chemicals with food, water, or other reactive chemicals.
6. Hazardous chemicals should be secured on the vehicle, so they can’t move or fall.
7. Individuals, transporting chemicals, must be familiar with the material’s hazards and know what to do, in the event of spillage.
Points to Consider while Handling and Distributing Chemicals:
Every producer will normally require a consistent supply of chemicals, to ensure a steady flow of production, and to keep goods on the supermarket shelves.
1. Labelling: Each chemical is distinct and has different properties and usage. Labelling helps the receiver know how to handle the chemicals.
2. Use of Symbols: Whether it is industrial or laboratory chemicals, symbols always help when it comes to handling the chemical.
3. Using Material Safety Data Sheet: When a material safety data sheet is used, chemical handlers are more familiar with critical information about the chemicals, their properties, and handling guidelines.
4. Special packaging: Packaging is always important, whenever chemicals are to be handled, or distributed to different end-users.