Do I Need Spill Kits on Site?

All sites, regardless of size, have a spill risk and need to take the appropriate measures to prevent them from happening and reducing the likelihood of a serious environmental incident if they do occur.  Spill kits are essential equipment to have on site so you can quickly respond to any incident that does occur.  This blog will explain exactly why you need a spill kit on site.

What do spill kits do?

Spill kits are collections of absorbent materials that are used to contain and clean up spillages of potentially hazardous substances.  There are different types of spill kits for use on different spilled substances (read our blog here) and spill kit contents can vary according to your requirements.  Spill kits should be in good condition, weather proof containers that are clear to identify and easily accessible.

How do I know if I need spill kits?

Most businesses will require a spill kit.  Obvious spill risk areas like refuelling areas and oil and chemical storage areas will clearly need a spill kit but other areas that are less obvious should also be considered.  For example, MHE charging areas, car parks and yard areas present spill risks.  You should identify all spill risk areas (read more here) and ensure there is a spill kit close by that can be quickly deployed.

We call a contractor if we have a spill, surely we don’t need spill kits?

Having a contractor on-call to deal with an incident is a great idea to ensure a spillage is dealt with effectively and in a fully informed manner with consideration of the potential environmental impact.  However, you’ll need to do something with your spillage before they arrive.  This is what spill kits are for – you can use them to contain the spillage and protect areas such as drains and unmade ground.  Spill kits often have booms (long socks) that you can put around the spillage so it doesn’t get any further and your spill kit may have drain protectors that you can put over your drains.

Do we need anything else?

When you deploy spill kits, it is essential to ensure that your staff are trained in their use.  You may consider having a core team of spill responders who are trained in the initial spill response and they are the only people allowed to deploy spill kits.  You will also need to ensure that spill kits remain full and in good condition.  You should implement regular checks of your spill kits and ensure there is a robust re-ordering process for when they are used.

Regardless of your business size, it is likely that you will need spill kits.  The hope is that you will never need to use them, but if you do, it is essential that they are in place and you have trained personnel who can use them correctly.  Look out for our next blog that will cover on-site spill kit arrangements.