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Safe Storage of Chemicals


The basic rules for the safe storage of chemicals in laboratory are:

1. Segregate all the incompatible chemicals for proper storage of chemicals for hazard class codes.

  • In other words, store like chemicals together and away from other groups of chemicals that might cause reactions if mixed.

2. Do not simply store chemicals in alphabetical order. When chemicals are stored alphabetically there is a great possibility of incompatible substance coming in contact.

  • Flammable materials should be stored in an approved, flammable materials storage cabinet or room.
  • Non-compatible chemicals shall be stored separately.
  • Liquids should be stored in unbreakable or double contained packaging.
  • Store acids in a dedicated place.
  • Store severe poisons in a dedicated poison cabinet.

3. Chemicals should not be stored on the floor.

4. Liquid chemicals should not be stored above eye level.

5. All chemicals should be labelled and dated. Look for unusual conditions in chemical storage areas, such as:

  • improper storage of chemicals, leaking or deteriorating containers, spilled chemicals, temperature extremes¬† (too hot or cold in storage area).
  • lack of or low lighting levels, blocked exits.

6. Never store a chemical in standard refrigerator.

7. Chemical storage under, over or near a sink should be avoided since many chemicals are affected by moisture. Some chemicals may cause explosion on coming in contact with water.