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Safe Handling 55 Gallon Drumsby Susan McElrath
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In the typical workplace 55 Gallon Drum are used to store material, to ship it, to dispense it for use, and to store wastes. All these 55 Gallon Drums must be moved from time to time. Like most things, there's a right way to move a drum-and several wrong ways to do it. This week's Safety Topic discusses the safe ways to move a drum. Help prevent injuries by moving drums safely.
At least four serious injuries can occur if a 55 Gallon Drum is not handled safely:
To pull the 55 Gallon drum, grip the near chime with one hand and the far chime with the other. Brace your foot at an angle across the bottom chime. Your hands and feet should form a straight line. Check the position of your fingers for possible pinch points. Now you are ready to pull back on the drum.
To push the 55 Gallon drum, place your hands near the chime at shoulder width. Move your shoulders low and close to the drum. Slowly push forward with your legs until you feel the drum reach its balance point.
When using the drag/pull method, place your hands at the near position at shoulder width. Brace the drum with your foot to prevent it from sliding, and shift your weight to the rear foot. Pull and drag it a few inches to the left then to the right.
To use the push/pull method, use one hand to pull the far chime. Use the other hand to push against the wall.
If a 55 Gallon drum starts to fall, get away from it as quickly as possible. If the contents spill, follow your worksite's procedures for reporting a spill.
If two people are moving a 55 Gallon drum, both people can push the drum, pull the drum, or one can push while the other pulls. When rolling the drum, it is safer for one person to roll it.
To roll a 55 Gallon drum, in this case to the left, follow these steps: