Safety Resource Library

Requirements for Flammable Liquid Storage Cabinets

By Ana Ellington, BLR Legal Editor

Topic: Chemical Safety

OSHA requires flammable cabinets to be designed and constructed to specific requirements. Metal cabinets must be constructed in the following manner (29 CFR 1910.106(d)(3)(ii)(a)):

  • These regulations also provide an option for wood cabinets at 29 CFR 1910.106(d)(3)(ii)(b). Wood cabinets must be constructed in the following manner:
  • Cabinet must be double-walled with 1½-inch airspace.
  • Joints must be riveted, welded, or made tight by some equally effective means.
  • Door must have a three-point latch.
  • Door sill must be raised at least 2 inches above the cabinet bottom to retain spilled liquid within the cabinet.
  • Cabinet must be labeled in conspicuous lettering “Flammable—Keep Fire Away.”

These regulations also provide an option for wood cabinets at 29 CFR 1910.106(d)(3)(ii)(b). Wood cabinets must be constructed in the following manner:

  • Bottom, top, and sides of cabinet must be constructed of exterior grade plywood at least 1 inch thick.
  • Plywood must not break down or delaminate under fire conditions.
  • Joints must be rabbeted and fastened in two directions with flathead wood
  • When more than one door is used, they should have a rabbeted overlap of not less than 1 inch.
  • Doors must be equipped with latches and hinges that are mounted to not lose their holding capacity when subjected to the fire test.
  • Cabinet must be labeled in conspicuous lettering “Flammable—Keep Fire Away.”

Limits for Liquids Kept Outside Cabinets

The total amount of liquids that may be kept outside a storage cabinet or storage room are listed at 29 CFR 1910.106(e)(2)(ii)[b]. These limits are only applicable to those portions of an industrial plant where the use and handling of flammables is only incidental to the principal business. The quantity of liquid that may be stored outside of an inside storage room or flammables storage cabinets in any one fire area of a building cannot exceed:

  • 25 gallons of Category 1 liquids in containers
  • 120 gallons of Category 2, 3, or 4 liquids in containers
  • 660 gallons of Category 2, 3, or 4 liquids in a single portable tank

The maximum capacity of liquid that may be stored in storage cabinets is stated in 29 CFR 1910.106 (d)(3)(i): “Not more than 60 gallons of Category 1, 2, or 3 liquids, nor more than 120 gallons of Category 4 liquids may be stored in a storage cabinet.”

This library resource is located in the following industry type(s): , , ,