Legislative requirements for schools storing and handling dangerous goods.
Yes – if your school has any dangerous goods on its premises.
A workplace must comply with the Dangerous Goods Act 1985 (Vic), the Dangerous Goods (Storage and Handling) Regulations 2012 (Vic) and the Code of Practice for the Storage and Handling of Dangerous Goods 2013. These regulations are designed to ensure that dangerous goods are stored and handled appropriately The Code of Practice provides practical guidance on how to comply with the Regulations.
To comply with the requirements of the Dangerous Goods (Storage & Handling) Regulations 2012 (Vic), your school must undertake the following actions:
- Identify all Dangerous Goods stored at the school, including domestic cleaning products and insect sprays
- Create a Register of Dangerous Goods
- Obtain MSDS for all Dangerous Goods and keep in an accessible location with the register
- Ensure appropriate labels (correct diamond/s for Class/Division and any Subsidiary Risk), together with the product or chemical name are on all Dangerous Goods containers, including all decanted products
- Determine quantities of each Class/Division and Packing Group of the Dangerous Goods in each location and the total amounts on site, to evaluate if placarding (Hazchem signage) is required (unlikely in most schools)
- Identify hazards associated with storage and handling processes, having regard to the hazards of the Dangerous Goods
- Conduct and document risk assessments and establish controls for the use of all dangerous goods
- Develop Safe Work Procedures (SWP) for the safe handling and storage of the Dangerous Goods, applying the hierarchy of controls
- Train staff in the hazards of the Dangerous Goods, the control measures implemented, emergency plans and procedures and use/maintenance of their personal protective equipment
- Evaluate competency of staff and keep records of training and demonstrated competency
- Provide information, instruction and training to visitors, including contractors, to the premises
- Keep written records of any incidents associated with the storage and handling of the Dangerous Goods
- Monitor and review effectiveness of risk control procedures.
You could be penalised under breaches of the OHS and Dangerous Goods Acts.
- Vic DET Resources – Dangerous Goods (contains links to Acts, Regulations, Codes of Practice and other support material)
- Vic DET: School Policy and Advisory Guide – Dangerous Goods and Hazardous Substances
- Vic DET: Safety, Health and Wellbeing
- Vic DET: School Policy and Advisory Guide – Emergency and Critical Incident
- WorkSafe Victoria: Dangerous Goods
- WorkSafe Victoria: Dangerous Goods Storage and Handling Requirements
- WorkSafe Victoria: Code of Practice for the Storage of Dangerous Goods 2013