Control of Substances Hazardous to Health - COSHH Level 2 (VTQ)

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Chemical Spill Kits

Video 33 of 47
3 min 55 sec
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We are now going to look at chemical spill kits. There are three main types of chemical spill kits we have got here, the first one here is what is called a maintenance kit. This is ideally things like coolants, solvents, oils, mild acids and mild alkalines. The other one here is an oil kit, since it is really just for oil type spills, so it is suitable for oils, fuels, diesel, petroleum, and any other petroleum-based solvents. And what I'm actually going to look at here is the chemical kits, which it is slightly different because it is suitable for acids, alkaline solvents, coolants and oils, so this will be able to take acid and alkalines much stronger than the others would. So it is quite important that if you have a spill kit, you make sure you are using the correct one for the correct job. On the actual display on it, they all come in these plastic bags. On the main display, it will tell you what it's actually suitable for. As you can see, it is directly from the cover, exactly what the product will do. So just make sure that what load you are carrying, or what load you have in your workplace, you have the relevant spill kits for that chemical.

Inside the kit, the first thing you will see is an instruction leaflet. And on there, it will tell you some information about the spill kit and what it can actually do. All of them will be slightly different, different makes of these kits, but they are all basically got very similar types of components in there. The first thing to remember with any spill kit or any chemical spill kit is your own personal safety, so you would always need to make sure you are wearing a full PPE, so this would be gloves, this may well be a respirator, or maybe overalls or any other clothing you need to make sure that you keep yourself safe from the chemical itself, but also from any potential dust or vapours that could be given off by it. The components inside here, which we will go through one by one, this is just a basic sock. What this will do is, if it's a chemical and you want to try and hold it within a set space, or you want to divert the spill over into a different direction, this is the sort of thing you can use. It's very lightweight, has very high absorbency, and the hope is, is that as chemical comes through, you can sort of move it around in a different direction. You can join two of these up together, and what they recommend is to try and cover it over around about 30 centimetres. So if you are using two of these, then overlap them by about 30 centimetres.

The next part we will look at is the mats. Now, these mats come in different shapes. This is obviously the chemical one, and this would be where you can put it down onto a chemical. So if there is a small chemical spill, you can literally lay this down onto the chemical, and the mat is specially designed to actually absorb the chemical into the substance. Once you have actually contained the chemical, then you need to pick the chemical up. So, to do this, you can use shovels or you can use brooms, but then you need to dispose of this correctly. Now, most of these kits will also come with a disposal bag. So this is a bag for actually collecting the waste products. The key thing when you are doing this, is you need to pick the mat correctly, so make sure when you are loading them up, you get them into the bag safely. This is not an easy job to do on your own. If you are out transporting and you are using this out on the road, it might just be you there, but if there is someone else who can help, then get some help, because one person can hold the bag open and the other one can collect up the pads and the sock, and then get it into the bag.

Now, another substance that you can use with clearing up chemicals is the granules, and these granules will be sprinkled onto the substance, and then it will absorb into the granules. And then once you have got this, you can brush or shovel this up. But again, when you are shovelling this back up again, make sure you do put the waste products into the bag. So, the final thing with any of these chemical spill kits is disposal. Once you put it into the bag, you then need to make sure that you have disposed of all of these wastes in accordance with workplace policies and procedures. And remember, always wear gloves and PPE when you are handling any of these chemicals, even when it's in the bag and you are transporting it to the waste.