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Compressed Gas Cylinder Safety

Gas Cylinders in Corridors

In August 2015, the Ad Hoc Safety Committee directed the EHS Office to initiate a campaign to move compressed gas cylinders out of the corridors. The EHS Coordinators and their teams were asked to:

  • Present this topic at a representative meeting before they start inspections. Modify the attached slides. (scroll down)
  • Encourage EHS representatives to use the Gas Cylinder Summary Report and check if there are any AirGas cylinders in their lab that can be returned. Also, check if all of the cylinders in the corridor belong to their lab. Often times, they belong to a nearby lab or to a lab that moved.
  • Download the B2P quickcards (scroll down) to verify the Airgas inventory information.
  • Educate representatives to use the webpage to request that Airgas pick up unneeded cylinder(s) when you don’t need to order cylinders. This webpage can also be used to report cylinders that have been relocated.

Guidelines for Securing Cylinders

Return Empty, Old, or Other Cylinders

  • Write on the Airgas tag (or tape) EMPTY or Ready for pick up in big letters with a marker. Airgas drivers asked us to make it very clear.
  • Use the webpage to request that Airgas picks up cylinder(s). Airgas coordinates with other vendors to return most types of cylinders. If a cylinder can not be returned to a vendor, refer to the cost of disposal.
  • Call the MIT Cryogenic Lab x3-2215 or 3-2250 to pick up their helium (gas) cylinders or cryogenic dewars.
  • If a contractor abandons cylinders, contact the Department of Facilities.
  • Student Groups can ask SAO to check their purchasing records.

Alternatives to Non-returnable gas cylinders

Disposing of Non-returnable gas cylinders can be very expensive and time consuming. (These are not the type of cylinder that are rented from Airgas or other vendors.)  In the event that your research requires the use of small compressed gas cylinders, please follow this preferred method for procurement and disposal.

  • Work with Airgas, MIT’s preferred gas vendor, to determine if the gas you need can be purchased in a returnable and refillable cylinder. Airgas can also provide various size cylinders to reduce the potential safety hazards involved in the use of hazardous gases.  They can advise you about other vendors who sell the gases that Airgas doesn’t.
  • Order the smallest returnable or refillable cylinder possible. For example, Airgas’s SAFE-T-CYL program can provide the following gasses in returnable cylinders. (Sulfur Dioxide; Hydrogen Chloride; Ammonia; Chlorine)  Matheson Gas has several options which can be found on www.mathesongas.com.
  • Another option is to have a cylinder partially filled with only the amount of gas that you need so you reduce your cost and you reduce the hazard.

Resources

Files

Gas Cylinders in Corridors

In August 2015, the Ad Hoc Safety Committee directed the EHS Office to initiate a campaign to move compressed gas cylinders out of the corridors. The EHS Coordinators and their teams were asked to:

  • Present this topic at a representative meeting before they start inspections. Modify the attached slides. (scroll down)
  • Encourage EHS representatives to use the Gas Cylinder Summary Report and check if there are any AirGas cylinders in their lab that can be returned. Also, check if all of the cylinders in the corridor belong to their lab. Often times, they belong to a nearby lab or to a lab that moved.
  • Download the B2P quickcards (scroll down) to verify the Airgas inventory information.
  • Educate representatives to use the webpage to request that Airgas pick up unneeded cylinder(s) when you don’t need to order cylinders. This webpage can also be used to report cylinders that have been relocated.

Guidelines for Securing Cylinders

Return Empty, Old, or Other Cylinders

  • Write on the Airgas tag (or tape) EMPTY or Ready for pick up in big letters with a marker. Airgas drivers asked us to make it very clear.
  • Use the webpage to request that Airgas picks up cylinder(s). Airgas coordinates with other vendors to return most types of cylinders. If a cylinder can not be returned to a vendor, refer to the cost of disposal.
  • Call the MIT Cryogenic Lab x3-2215 or 3-2250 to pick up their helium (gas) cylinders or cryogenic dewars.
  • If a contractor abandons cylinders, contact the Department of Facilities.
  • Student Groups can ask SAO to check their purchasing records.

Alternatives to Non-returnable gas cylinders

Disposing of Non-returnable gas cylinders can be very expensive and time consuming. (These are not the type of cylinder that are rented from Airgas or other vendors.)  In the event that your research requires the use of small compressed gas cylinders, please follow this preferred method for procurement and disposal.

  • Work with Airgas, MIT’s preferred gas vendor, to determine if the gas you need can be purchased in a returnable and refillable cylinder. Airgas can also provide various size cylinders to reduce the potential safety hazards involved in the use of hazardous gases.  They can advise you about other vendors who sell the gases that Airgas doesn’t.
  • Order the smallest returnable or refillable cylinder possible. For example, Airgas’s SAFE-T-CYL program can provide the following gasses in returnable cylinders. (Sulfur Dioxide; Hydrogen Chloride; Ammonia; Chlorine)  Matheson Gas has several options which can be found on www.mathesongas.com.
  • Another option is to have a cylinder partially filled with only the amount of gas that you need so you reduce your cost and you reduce the hazard.

Resources

Files