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Gases, Safe Use of

    Title:

    Gases, Safe Use of

    Publication date:

    1/22/2013

    Effective date:

    1/16/2013

    BRIEF

    Policy Summary

    The Gases program at Berkeley Lab identifies precautions to prevent injuries, property damage, and disruption to operations caused by leaks of compressed gas and over-pressurizations. Types of injuries and accidents that will be controlled include:

    • Injuries caused by flying objects accelerated by an explosion or pressure release
    • Fires and injuries caused by flammable gas ignition
    • Injuries caused by inhalation of toxic or asphyxiating gases

    Who Should Read This Policy

    This policy applies to all Berkeley Lab employees, affiliates, and subcontractors who will order, handle, or dispose of gases.

    To Read the Full Policy, Go To:

    The POLICY tab on this wiki page

    To Read the ES&H Program Details, Go To:

    http://www.lbl.gov/ehs/pub3000/CH13.html

    Contact Information

    Gas Safety Subject Matter Expert
    EHSS Division

    Title:

    Gases, Safe Use of

    Publication date:

    1/22/2013

    Effective date:

    1/16/2013

    POLICY

    A. Purpose

    The Gas Safety Program at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) identifies precautions to prevent injuries, property damage, and disruption to operations caused by leaks of compressed gas and over-pressurizations. Types of injuries and accidents that will be controlled include:

    • Injuries caused by flying objects accelerated by an explosion or pressure release
    • Fires and injuries caused by flammable gas ignition
    • Injuries caused by inhalation of toxic or asphyxiating gases

    B. Persons Affected

    This policy applies to all Berkeley Lab employees, affiliates, and subcontractors who will order, handle, or dispose of gases.

    C. Exceptions

    None

    D. Policy Statement

    1. The Gases program general requirements at Berkeley Lab include (Work Process A):
      • Gas-leak emergencies
      • Documentation
      • Training
      • Gas-cylinder storage and use locations
      • Gas cylinders
      • Gas-flow systems
      • Purge gas
      • Vacuum pumps
      • Ventilation
      • Gas detection
      • Electrical systems
    2. The requirements of this section apply to the storage and use of compressed and liquefied flammable gas in quantities less than or equal to 11 m3 or 400 cf (e.g., two size 1A hydrogen cylinders containing about 200 cf each) and greater than 0.6 m3 (20 cf). (Work Process B)
    3. This section presents general requirements and guidelines for pyrophoric gas use. Additional requirements may apply to the storage and use of pyrophoric gas in quantities greater than 0.3 m3 (10 cf) for gas not in a gas cabinet and 0.6 m3 (20 cf) for gas in a gas cabinet. (Work Process C)
    4. Health-hazard gases, for the purpose of this chapter, include gases that at lower concentrations may cause significant acute or chronic toxic health effects. These gases can, for example, poison someone and/or cause corrosion, irritation, and disease in human tissue. (Work Process D)
    5. Two training classes may be required for users of gas systems (Work Process E):
    • Pressure Safety EHS0171
    • Chemical Hygiene and Safety EHS0348

    E. Roles and Responsibilities

    See the Gases program for information about roles and responsibilities related to this policy's implementation.

    Role

    Responsibilities

    Principal Investigator/Supervisor

    The principal investigator or gas-use supervisor has primary responsibility for gas-use safety and implementation of all provisions of this chapter, including:

    • Activity Hazard Documents
    • Safety Notes
    • Training
    • Equipment and controls implementation, maintenance, and inspections
    • Request for gas pre-purchase approval, when required
    • Self-assessment inspections

    EHSS Industrial Hygiene Group

    The Industrial Hygiene Group provides an EHSS hazard evaluation and code-compliance coordination related to fire, life-safety, pressure, health, and oxygen-deficiency gas hazards, which include:

    • Assisting the gas user in the evaluation of hazards and the determination of appropriate controls
    • Evaluating and approving purchases of gases that require pre-purchase approval
    • Reviewing new gas-use controls and designs (i.e., as part of AHD reviews), facilities projects, and required pre-gas purchases
    • Determining health-hazard classifications, required engineering controls, and/or physiological warning property ratings to previously unclassified health-hazard gases, dilute gases, and gas mixtures
    • Periodically auditing gas uses as one component of the EHSS Integrated Functional Appraisal Program
    • Administering and maintaining the Gases, Pressure Safety and Cryogenics, and Fire Protection and Safety programs. Pressure safety responsibilities are described in the Pressure Safety and Cryogenics program.

    EHSS Fire Department

    • Monitors and responds to alarms transmitted via the fire alarm system or emergency telephone number system
    • Evaluates and issues permits for welding, cutting, and other hot work operations

    Mechanical Engineering

    Pressure safety responsibilities are described in the Pressure Safety and Cryogenics program.

    Facilities Division Maintenance & Operations

    • Assists in the selection, installation, and start-up of maintainable and reliable facilities safety systems that support gas-use operations
    • Through the Regulator Shop, assembles gas systems and provides, inspects, repairs, and/or rebuilds many commonly used gas-system components when requested
    • Manages gas-detector maintenance services for detector users who request service
    • Maintains an updated inventory of all gas detectors

    F. Definitions/Acronyms

    See the Gases program for technical terms related to the details of this policy and its implementation.

    Term

    Definition

    CFC

    California Fire Code

    Control area

    A space bounded by not less than a one-hour fire-resistive occupancy separation within which exempt amounts of hazardous materials may be stored, dispensed, handled, or used, as defined in the California Fire Code

    Corrosive gas

    A gas that can cause visible destruction of, or irreversible alterations in, living tissue (e.g., skin, eyes, or respiratory system) by chemical action

    DOT

    U.S. Department of Transportation

    Exhausted enclosure

    A gas cabinet, lab hood, or enclosed compartment that is connected to an approved negative-pressure exhaust duct system

    Flammable gas

    A gas that can be ignited in air

    Compressed gas

    A material that is shipped in a compressed gas cylinder and acts as a gas upon release at normal temperature and pressure or is used or handled as a gas

    Gas cabinet

    An exhausted enclosure used to store or use gas cylinders and that meets the requirements specified in this chapter

    Hazardous gas

    A gas that is included in one or more of the following hazard categories: corrosive, flammable, health hazard, oxidizer, pyrophoric, reactive, or toxic

    Hazardous-gas detection system

    A fixed system used to detect the presence of hazardous gas at potentially unsafe levels

    IDLH

    Immediately dangerous to life and health. IDLH is a maximum concentration of airborne contaminant to which a person could be exposed for 30 minutes without experiencing escape-impairing symptoms or irreversible health effects.

    Liquefied gas

    A liquid contained in a compressed-gas cylinder that has a vapor pressure exceeding 276 kPa at 38°C (40 psi at 100°F)

    Lower explosive limit (LEL)

    The lowest concentration of a substance in air that will produce a flash of fire when an ignition source is present

    NFPA

    National Fire Protection Association

    Oxidizing gas

    Gas that initiates or promotes combustion in materials, either by catching fire itself or by causing a fire through the release of oxygen or other gases

    Oxygen deficiency

    A condition that occurs when a breathable atmosphere contains less than 19.5% oxygen. Note: Normal air contains 20.9% oxygen.

    Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) and Threshold Limit Value (TLV)

    Employee airborne exposure limits established for particular chemicals by the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Fed/OSHA) and the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), respectively. DOE requires that employee exposures must not exceed PELs or TLVs.

    Pyrophoric gases

    Gases that may spontaneously ignite in air at or below 54°C (130°F). Specific gases may not ignite in all circumstances or may explosively decompose.

    Safety Note

    A document used to record engineering calculations or tests on specific equipment. A Safety Note may also specify operational requirements addressed in an Activity Hazard Document or in operating instructions.

    STP

    Standard temperature and pressure

    G. Recordkeeping Requirements

    Role

    Recordkeeping Requirement

    EHSS Division

    Gas inventory (on Berkeley Lab Chemical Management System)

    Facilities Division

    Gas-detector inventory

    H. Implementing Documents

    Document Number

    Title

    Type

    07.07.015.001

    Gases

    Program

    07.07.015.002

    Work Process A, General Requirements 

    Process

    07.07.015.003

    Work Process B, Flammable Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.004

    Work Process C, Pyrophoric Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.005

    Work Process D, Health-Hazard Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.006

    Work Process E, Training 

    Process

    07.01.001.001

    EHS General Policy and Responsibilities

    Program

    07.07.026.001

    Pressure Safety and Cryogenics

    Program

    07.11.001.001

    Fire Prevention and Protection

    Program

    07.04.001.001

    EH&S Training

    Program

     

    Chemical Hygiene and Safety Plan

    Program

    I. Contact Information

    Gas Safety Subject Matter Expert
    EHSS Division

    J. Revision History

    Date

    Revision

    By Whom

    Revision Description

    Section(s) Affected

    Change Type

    1/2/2012

    0

    J. Dionne

    Rewrite for wiki (brief)

    All

    Minor

    1/22/2013

    1

    J. Dionne

    Rewrite for wiki (policy)

    All

    Minor

    DOCUMENT INFORMATION

    Title:

    Gases, Safe Use of

    Document number

    07.07.015.000

    Revision number

    1

    Publication date:

    1/22/2013

    Effective date:

    1/16/2013

    Next review date:

    1/16/2016

    Policy Area:

    Industrial Hygiene and Safety

    RPM Section (home)

    ESH

    RPM Section (cross-reference)

    none

    Functional Division

    EHSS

    Prior reference information (optional)

    PUB-3000 Chapter 13

    Source Requirements Documents

    • CFC Title 24, Part 9, California Fire Code, Article 49, Welding and Cutting
    • CFC Title 24, Part 9, California Fire Code, Article 51, Semiconductor Fabrication Facilities Using Hazardous Production Materials
    • CFC Title 24, Part 9, California Fire Code, Article 74, Compressed Gases
    • CFC Title 24, Part 9, California Fire Code, Article 80, Hazardous Materials
    • CFC Title 24, Part 9, California Fire Code, Article 82, Liquefied Petroleum Gas
    • 29 CFR 1910.101, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Compressed Gases
    • 29 CFR 1910.102, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Acetylene
    • 29 CFR 1910.103, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Hydrogen
    • 29 CFR 1910.105, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Nitrous Oxide
    • 29 CFR 1910.110, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Storage and Handling of Liquefied Petroleum Gases
    • 29 CFR 1910.111, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Storage and Handling of Anhydrous Ammonia
    • 29 CFR 1910.1000, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Permissible Exposure Limits
    • 29 CFR 1910.1200, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Hazard Communication
    • 29 CFR 1910.1450, Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry, Laboratory Standards
    • 49 CFR, Transportation, Parts 100–199, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, Department of Transportation

    Implementing Documents

    Document Number

    Title

    Type

    07.07.015.001

    Gases

    Program

    07.07.015.002

    Work Process A, General Requirements 

    Process

    07.07.015.003

    Work Process B, Flammable Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.004

    Work Process C, Pyrophoric Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.005

    Work Process D, Health-Hazard Gases 

    Process

    07.07.015.006

    Work Process E, Training 

    Process

    07.01.001.001

    EHS General Policy and Responsibilities

    Program

    07.07.026.001

    Pressure Safety and Cryogenics

    Program

    07.11.001.001

    Fire Prevention and Protection

    Program

    07.04.001.001

    EH&S Training

    Program

     

    Chemical Hygiene and Safety Plan

    Program

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