On-site storage tank repairs can be tricky under the best of circumstances, but they can be particularly difficult when you take confined spaces into account. OSHA has recently put safety rules and regulation regarding confined spaces into effect, but working to repair tank liners or otherwise address important issues from inside a storage tank is still a dangerous prospect. The Chemical Safety Board has stated that there have been over 60 fatalities since 1990 that were caused by fires and explosions from hot work activities in tanks, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has reported 160 fatalities associated with working in confined spaces since 1982.
Working within any confined space is dangerous, but it is also a must when it comes to storage tanks. Fortunately, most of the injuries and fatalities that can occur while making tank liner repairs can also be avoided with the proper safety precautions. The new OSHA regulations are a good start, but there are still things that you can do to keep your own workers safe.
Chemical and Water Tank Repairs How to Prevent Accidents and Injuries
First of all, you need to keep workers well aware of what was in a tank before they attempt any repairs. Workers need to be told if there were any toxic chemicals stored in the tank, and they need to have access to any specializes safety equipment they may need to keep themselves safe. This also means that any tank that once stored a toxic or otherwise hazardous material should be properly ventilated. There should be about 5 air exchanges per hour to ensure the proper ventilation.
Second of all, workers need to be told what is around the tank. Even if the tank itself only housed potable water, there could still be problems if there are any open sewers, electrical wires, pits, or anything else that could cause a serious injury.
Finally, the structure of the tank itself needs to be secure enough to accommodate any kind of work that needs to be done to it. This means that the roof needs to be able to support the weight of your workers and any equipment they might be using. This is one of the biggest reasons why regular tank inspection is so important, so don’t neglect to have this done.
Tank Repair and Inspection Professionals in California
If you have any issues with your storage tanks or tank linings and need them repaired, it’s always best to contact professional contractors for the job. Storage tanks are usually very secure as long as the proper safety precautions are taken, and a good professional storage tank repair service will make sure that everything is handled safely at all times.