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Hazardous materials can be described as those substances that endanger the safety of the public, the transporters and handlers of such materials. There are nine classes of hazardous materials. Class one involves major, minor or insensitive explosives, fire also appears in this class. Class two involves compressed gases, which are either flammable or inflammable. Class three has all the flammable liquids. Class four has the flammable solids. Class five consists of oxidizers and organic peroxides. Class six has toxic materials. Class eight involves corrosive materials, which can destroy the human skin and corrode steel and finally. Class nine has all the miscellaneous materials, which do not meet the other classifications. This paper aims to discuss the fire prevention process of hazardous materials.

 The construction of the storage facility should observe the fire prevention regulations. Such regulations involve having proper fire exits; the signs to these exits should be able to function even in case of loss of power. There should be compliance with the electrical statutes that regulates against overheating and electrical faults. The installation of the wires and conductors should be investigated, so as to check for any overloading of the wires (Collins & HSTN, 2002).

The storage facility should have different fire extinguishers installed to cater for different causes of fire and they should be easily accessible. The storage facility should have the data of all the materials, of more importance to the inspector would be the records of all the flammable materials in the storage facility. The data should have the flammable limits in case of exposure to given temperature; it should also contain the explosive limits. Explosive limit is the level at which the materials can explode if exposed to a given temperature. Some materials require inside storage, some flammable and combustible liquids should be stored underground, depending on their characteristics. Some of these liquids will be stored in containers on the ground and kept away from exits and stairways. Fire walls are also necessary in case of high flammable commodities and they ought to be regularly inspected.

In the storage facility there should be clear signs prohibiting the use of flammable materials such as “DO NOT SMOKE”. The containers with flammable materials should contain clear signs such as “CAUTION! FLAMMABLE”.  The fire alarm system should be constantly checked, and its effectiveness should be considered in the detection of fire.

Documents to be used in the inspection of the storage facility include: the registration certificate of the storage facility by the necessary regulatory authority, the documents allowing personnel to handle the hazardous materials, documents containing the data of all the flammable materials in the storage facility and the self-inspection documents. The inspector should have a control document containing all the things that are to be verified. He should acquire the safety procedures and rules of the facility; this will assist in verifying whether the company is able to follow its own procedures relating to safety. In addition, the fire drill procedure would be acquired and verified.

The fire prevention personnel should undergo various training programs relating to various kinds of hazards. These programs supplement their knowledge. The personnel should understand the various classes of hazardous materials. They should be able to tell and describe materials of different nature for example whether explosive, flammable, corrosive or reactive. In a nutshell, the personnel should be able to understand each and every cause of fire related to hazardous materials.

In the case of fire prevention personnel, certificates from formal training are necessary to be able to perform the job. However, for an inspector a degree is necessary, considering the technicality of the work. An inspector should also have various certificates relating to this area.

Code: Sample20

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