Gas Cylinder Safety

Gas Cylinder Safety

Karan and Associates, Inc. offers several products that help you comply with safety guidelines and regulations from OSHA, NFPA, CGA and others.

Mishandling gas cylinders, which can have internal pressure of up to 2,500 pounds per square inch, can be disastrous. Dropping, tipping over or exposing a cylinder to heat can cause weaknesses or cracks in the cylinder’s shell, which can result in a shrapnel-laden explosion.

We want you as a customer to be safe when handling and storing gas cylinder, and recommend you follow these general safety recommendations:

  • Know and understand the properties, uses, and safety precautions before using any gas or gas mixture. Consult the cylinder’s Safety Data Sheet (SDS formerly known as MSDS) for safety information on the gases and equipment you will be using. 
  • Determine the appropriate equipment required to use the product and know how to safely operate the equipment.
  • Be aware of potential hazards and develop plans to cover possible emergencies. Use emergency drills to practice implementing these plans. Inform local hospitals, fire departments, and other emergency response organizations of the gases in use so that they, too, will be prepared in the event of an emergency.
  • Provide personal protective equipment (PPE) and the required training for its use. Require personnel to wear the proper PPE for each task. Locate other safety equipment such as fire extinguishers, eye wash stations, and showers at appropriate locations. Thoroughly inform everyone about the hazards of the gases they are using and how to respond to an emergency.
  • Follow all national, state, and local regulations pertaining to the storage, use, and disposal of compressed gases and cryogenic liquids (see resource links below).
  • If you are unfamiliar with the hazards associated with a particular gas, contact your supplier for additional information.



When storing gas cylinders:

  • Secure cylinders upright with a chain or strap in a proper cylinder cart.
  • Store cylinders at least 20 feet from combustible materials in a dry, ventilated place.
  • Keep oxygen cylinders at least 20 feet from fuel gas cylinders.
  • Ensure valves are completely closed and any protection devices are secured.
  • Avoid storing cylinders in lockers – a leak could result in a dangerous gas buildup.
  • Use proper warning signs in areas where cylinders are stored.
  • Keep cylinders in a location free from vehicle traffic, excessive heat, and electrical circuits.
  • Keep empty cylinders away from full ones.



Most incidents and injuries involving gas cylinders occur during handling or transportation. To help prevent incidents when moving cylinders, we offer the following tips:

  • Handle cylinders with care and avoid dropping or hitting them against anything.
  • Follow proper procedures and use the right equipment, including safety glasses, heavy-duty gloves, and protective footwear.
  • Ensure safety measures, such as caps or guards, are securely installed.
  • Use a cart or hand truck instead of dragging or rolling cylinders.
  • Use proper cradles, nets or platforms if using a crane.
  • Avoid lifting cylinders by their caps or guards or with magnets or slings, which can damage the valves.



We recommend you read and review all the applicable guidelines and regulation to assure you are properly managing your gas cylinders. The following resource links provide some of the websites that contain the guidelines and regulations for gas cylinders. Depending on your location other or additional guidelines and regulations may apply.

OSHA Standard for Compressed Gas and Equipment:

OSHA: 29 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 1910.101 - Compressed gases (general requirements).

CGA Pamphlet P-1 -  Standard for Safe Handling of Compressed Gases in Containers

NFPA 1 – Fire Code

NFPA 55 - Compressed Gases and Cryogenic Fluids Code