How do I use oxygen and acetylene cylinders safely?
Secure cylinders in an upright position during storage, transportation and use. Use a suitable trolley when moving cylinders
Wear personal protective equipment (PPE) as required by legislation and your company guidelines
If you need to transport an acetylene cylinder horizontally, ensure it is left to stand upright for 24 hours prior to use
If using acetylene for welding and cutting, use all required approved gas control equipment and safety devices as required by legislation and your company guidelines
Use an approved lighting up and shutting down procedure for your welding or cutting torch
Take a look at our video offering additional information about the safe use of oxygen and acetylene for trained users of these gases:
What do I do I if I have a sustained backfire or if my acetylene cylinder catches fire?
Do not approach cylinders that are involved in the fire until you have been advised by the emergency services that it is safe to do so.
Raise the alarm and evacuate the area
Contact the emergency services
Inform them of the number, type and location of the cylinders where possible
Advise Air Products on (tel number)
What do I do I if my acetylene cylinder is exposed to heat?
Any gas cylinder that is exposed to extreme heat may rupture due to an increase of temperature and pressure. If acetylene cylinders are exposed to extreme heat (for example if the welding torch flame comes into contact with the cylinder), the following actions are recommended:
Warn personnel and evacuate the area
For heated cylinders, a suitably sized hazard zone of up to 200 meters should be established, based on a number of criteria, such as the size and number of cylinders involved and shielding available
Prevent access to the area
Call the emergency services and the gas supplier
If safe to do so, immediately start the cooling of heated cylinders by deluging them with water from a safe place (behind heavy machinery or a solid wall) without approaching the cylinders
Where possible, establish information about the time that the fire started, the number and location of acetylene cylinders and other cylinders or chemicals involved
Give this information to the emergency services on arrival
What do I do if I think that my cylinder valve is leaking?
Close the cylinder valve
If the leak has stopped
Take cylinder out of service and clearly identify it
Contact us to arrange for the cylinder to be collected
If the cylinder is still leaking
Ventilate the room by opening doors and windows
Avoid ignition sources such as non-EX electrically operated fans
Evacuate the area within the vicinity of the cylinder
Contact the fire services and contact us
How should I store my acetylene cylinders?
When not in use, store gas cylinders closed and in a secure well-ventilated area
Never store acetylene cylinders in an occupied building, unventilated rooms, underground rooms or in areas accessible to the public
Store and use acetylene cylinders in an upright position to avoid loss of solvent which reduces the cylinder capacity. Provide a means of preventing cylinders from falling if accidentally bumped
Keep cylinders away from external sources of heat
Separate flammable gas cylinders from oxygen and other oxidizing gas cylinders during storage and keep full acetylene cylinders separate from empty ones
How do I transport cylinders safely?
Cylinders are very heavy and travel at the same speed as your vehicle. However, unlike your vehicle, they are not fitted with any brakes and unless they are adequately secured they can move forward under braking and cause severe damage.
There are some basic safety rules to follow:
Check that cylinder valves are properly closed
If the cylinder is designed to have a cylinder valve cap, then one should be fitted
Ventilate your vehicle and keep windows open. Do not transport a cylinder in the car boot
Dismantle equipment such as regulators and hoses and torches
Ensure all cylinders are properly secured and prevented from moving during your journey
Go directly to your destination
Immediately unload when arriving at destination or if stopping for a longer time and store cylinders in a ventilated place
To get further information about the loading, unloading, collecting and transportation of gas cylinders, please take a look at the guide 'Safe Transport of Gas' guide provided by European Industrial Gas Association (EIGA).
How does the ADR regulation and the 1000 points rule concern me?
Since January 1, 2007, there is a requirement for the driver of any type of vehicle, not only for those above 3.5 tonnes, carrying dangerous goods in excess of the threshold limits to be in possession of a vocational training certificate, or ADR Licence as it is better known.
If you wish to benefit from the exemption of some of the requirements of the ADR regulations (such as the obligation to have orange plates, high visibility vests and wheel chocks), you need to understand the 1000 points rule and the limited quantity thresholds. The full ADR regulations only apply if your cylinder load exceeds this quantity threshold.