In today's dynamic business landscape, the safety of your workplace and environmental responsibility are non-negotiable. If your business deals with liquids, chemicals, or hazardous substances in any capacity, the question arises: Does your workplace need bunded storage?
Bunded storage systems are a crucial component designed to reduce the risks associated with potential spills of hazardous materials, both to your employees and the surrounding environment. In the following paragraphs, we'll delve into the most important aspects of bunded storage, helping you determine whether your workplace requires it, and exploring the various options available to suit your specific needs.
The Importance of Bunded Storage
Bunding systems capture and contain hazardous liquids and chemicals, making them safer and easier to manage and clean up should they escape from their drum or Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC). These systems act as a crucial line of defence against environmental contamination and health risks. Here at Containit Solutions, we offer an extensive range of bunding and spill containment solutions, including longspan bunded shelving, IBC bunding, battery storage and handling cages, drum bunding, outdoor dangerous goods stores, spill kits, and more.
However, before you decide to invest in bunded storage, it's essential to evaluate whether your workplace truly needs it and understand the different types of bunded storage available.
The Type of Facility Matters
The type of facility you run plays a significant role in determining the necessity of bunded storage. If your workplace stores, transfers, processes, or dispenses any chemicals or substances that are toxic, hazardous, or harmful to people or the environment, bunded pallet storage is a must. Whether you're dealing with obvious candidates like pesticides, petroleum, oil, diesel, or acid, or seemingly harmless substances like milk, bunded storage is vital.
Even substances as innocuous as milk require extensive bunding systems, given their high biological content and solubility. Industries like milk processing plants, wineries, food processing facilities, and any other facility that deals with and stores non-water liquids should implement bunded storage to prevent potential spills.
Understanding the Types of Bunded Storage
There are various types of bunded storage systems, and it's crucial to choose the one that aligns with your specific requirements. Longspan bunded pallet racking, free-standing IBC bunding, and drum bunding equipment are some of the options available.
It's essential to note that different substances should not be stored together, so you should use separate systems for different hazardous materials. For instance, bunded pallet racking is an excellent choice for small containers like 20L drums or 205L drums. Bunded pallets are not only for storage but are also compatible with forklifts and portable when unloaded, making them ideal for businesses on the move.
At Containit Solutions, we often recommend multiple bunding solutions to adequately cover all risks. IBC pallet bunds are designed to hold Intermediate Bulk Containers, commonly with a 1000L capacity. Drum Spill Pallets come in various varieties, including 2 and 4-drum pallets, low-profile drum bunds, and connector systems. These pallets are available in both steel and poly construction, with steel suitable for storing combustible liquids and polyethylene for corrosive chemicals.
There is a cost difference between IBC and drum bunding due to the amount of material required to make larger bunds rigid enough to handle heavier loads. Outdoor storage is often simpler and cheaper, especially for chemicals that are needed outside.
Indoor vs. Outdoor Storage
Chemical storage requirements depend on a huge range of factors including council approval as outlined in your site’s DA (development application), how large your indoor storage is as this will dictate the volume of liquid you can store indoors, compatibility with other chemicals you may want to store indoors, as well as their proximity to ignition sources.
Outdoor storage is much simpler and generally much cheaper particularly if that is where the actual chemical is going to be required anyway. Outdoor storage solutions could include bunds with covers, DG storage containers, lubrication containers and other tank systems.
Understanding Secondary Containment
Bunding is a form of secondary containment, not intended for long-term chemical storage. The containment system may only be rated to hold chemicals for a limited time, especially in the case of highly corrosive chemicals stored in high-temperature environments. A plan for disposing of spilled liquid is essential, whether through waste management providers or on-site equipment.
Critical Considerations for Bunding
When requesting a bunding solution, it's crucial to inform your supplier about the specific chemicals you are storing. Factors like the chemical's class, SDS sheet, packing group, compatibility with other chemicals, and site risk assessment all play a role in determining the appropriate bunding system.