Flammable Liquids

What are flammable liquids?


A flammable liquid is any liquid having a flashpoint at or below 199.4˚ F (93˚C). Flammable liquids are divided into 4 categories based on their flashpoint and boiling point, but these specifics are not covered within the scope of this meeting. A flammable liquid’s volatility is determined by its flashpoint, which is directly correlated to the liquids ability to generate vapor. So, the vapor is what burns, not the liquid itself. This is an important key in understanding flammable liquid volatility.

What are some conditions or actions which cause flammable liquids to ignite?

1. Improper storage of flammable liquids (i.e. no metal enclosure located away from ignition sources)
2. Defective or inadequate flammable liquid containers (i.e. cans, safety cans, etc.)
3. Atmospheric conditions which meet or exceed the flashpoint or boiling point of flammable liquids being stored
4. Improper storage of aerosol cans
5. Storage of defective aerosol cans
6. Inadequate ventilation of vapors from flammable liquid storage rooms
7. Presence of electrical ignition sources in flammable liquid storage rooms

What controls may be used to prevent ignition of flammable liquids?


1. Report any flammable liquid container leaks or vapors immediately
2. Visually inspect containers routinely to ensure they are designed for flammable liquid storage and to ensure they are serviceable
3. Report and properly discard any defective or leaking aerosol cans
4. Report any high concentrations of flammable liquid vapors
5. Report any ventilation issues related to flammable liquid storage rooms
6. Routinely conduct a visual inspection for ignition sources that could interact with flammable liquid vapors

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