TOOLBOX TALK 31/60
TOPIC: WORKING WITH FUEL
OBJECTIVE: TO ENSURE WORKERS ARE AWARE OF THE DANGERS WHEN WORKING WITH FUEL
Even if it is only in fuelling their vehicles to get to work, your team members will come in contact with petrol and diesel in some capacity very often. Remind your team of the hazards of these fuels and the environmental pollution they can cause.
Diesel and petrol are extremely dangerous. Here’s why:
- Vapours can travel significant distances and collect in low places
- It will float on top of water. Water is useless as firefighting material because it will spread burning petrol, not smother it.
- Other hazards often overlooked are health risks caused by inhaling the vapours or absorbing the liquid through the skin. Inhaling gasoline vapours causes depression of the central nervous system, like alcoholic intoxication.
- If spilled into water courses or near water courses, serious ground water pollution can occur.
Some things to know before you give your talk:
- Use fuel only as a motor fuel and as a mix for firefighting drip torches. It is too dangerous to use as a cleaning solvent.
- Eliminate all sources of vapor ignition. This means
- No smoking!
- Avoid static electricity build-up. Always connect portable containers to supply drums/ tanks with a bonding wire during filling; always touch the safety container’s dispensing hose to the fuel tank being filled before pouring or pumping gasoline.
- Do not refuel equipment while it is running. Shut off the engine and allow hot metal surfaces to cool enough so that you can touch them.
- Make sure you don’t over-fill the tank.
- Keep portable fire extinguishers near flammable liquid storage areas and equipment refuelling areas.· Don’t breathe fuel vapours unnecessarily. Keep containers and fuel tanks at arm’s length.
- If your clothing becomes saturated with fuel, remove it immediately. Contaminated clothing should be air dried before laundering.
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