Standard for Solvents in Laboratories
(Excluding Laboratories in Health Care Occupancies)

This standard is based on the 2000 Kentucky Fire Prevention Code that references NFPA 30 and NFPA 45. University laboratories are classified as a Class B (Moderate Fire Hazard) and the following listed quantities comply with that classification.
  1. The total amount of solvents within the laboratory shall not exceed ten (10) gallons per 100 sq.ft. See example.
  2. The total amount of unprotected solvents within the laboratory shall not exceed (see definitions) five (5) gallons per 100 sq.ft. See example.
  3. Solvents in excess of the amounts listed in item #1 shall be in an inside (bulk) storage rooms meeting NFPA 30.
  4. Flammable solvents (i.e., flash point < 100°F) must not be stored in an ordinary refrigerator. Must use an explosion proof refrigerator or flammable safe refrigerator.

Definitions

  • Solvent: any flammable or combustible liquid with a flash point below 200°F, including hazardous waste.
  • Unprotected Solvent: any solvent not in a flammable liquid storage cabinet or safety can.
  • Flammable Liquid Storage Cabinet: a metal cabinet meeting the design and construction requirements of NFPA 30 and having been tested and listed by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or Factor Mutual (FM) Laboratories.
  • Safety Can: a metal can meeting the design and construction requirements of NFPA 30 and having been tested and listed by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or Factor Mutual (FM) Laboratories. The safety can shall be a maximum 2-gallon capacity.
  • Inside (Bulk) Storage Room: a room constructed to meet the requirements of NFPA 30.
  • Laboratory: Room/space within four defining walls or an open-area concept defined with positioning of lab work benches/shelving.
  • Ordinary Container: A glass container no larger than one gallon or a metal can no larger than five gallons.

Recommended Practices

  • glass containers should be limited to 1 pint in size whenever practical
  • transferring of solvents should always be done in a laboratory hood or an approved bulk storage room
  • rubber carboys should be used when carrying 1-gallon glass containers of liquid
  • all 5-gallon metal cans should be stored in an approved flammable liquid storage cabinet or in an approved bulk storage room
  • glass containers not in use should be stored in flammable liquid storage cabinets

Contact the Division of Occupational Health & Safety (257-3827) for additional information on laboratory safety.

January 31, 2003

Fire Marshal | Laboratory Safety | EH&S Fact Sheets
 
Last Modified 05.10.2007
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