Accreditation

Oxygen Cylinder Storage Requirements

Accreditation Monthly, March 20, 2008

Editor's note: The Medical Gas and Oxygen Cylinder Storage Requirements were updated in 2016. Please click here to see the standards for 2017.

This month's e-newsletter was provided by Brad Keyes, CHSP, safety engineer and consultant for The Greeley Company.

The following oxygen cylinder storage requirements are relative to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards 99 Health Care Facilities (2005 edition). The Joint Commission has adopted these requirements and will measure for them during surveys.

  • A total of up to 300 ft.³ of oxygen may be stored per smoke compartment in any room or alcove without special requirements for that room
    - Cylinders must be secured in racks or by chains
  • Quantities between 300 ft.³ and 3000 ft.³ of oxygen and nitrous oxide must be stored in special designated rooms that meet the following requirements:
    - Rooms must be of noncombustible or limited-combustible construction (gypsum wallboard, tiled walls, etc.) with a door that can be secured from unauthorized entry (i.e., locked)
    - Oxygen may not be stored with other flammable gases or liquids
    - Oxygen cylinders must maintain a minimum distance of 20 ft. from combustibles (5 ft. if room is sprinklered) or be placed within an enclosed cabinet having a fire rating of at least a half  hour
    - Cylinders must be secured in racks or by chains
  • Quantities of 3000 ft.³ or more of oxygen and nitrous oxide must be stored in special designated rooms that meet the following requirements:
    - Have sufficient room to maneuver cylinders.
    - Are able to be secured with lockable doors.
    - Are constructed with noncombustible or limited-combustible construction, with a minimum fire rating of 1 hour (no allowances for fully sprinklered rooms).
    - Are compliant with NFPA 70 National Electric Code, with electrical devices located at, or 5 ft. above, finished floor.
    - Are heated by indirect means, if heat is required.
    - Contain adequate racks constructed of noncombustible or limited-combustible materials and chains to secure all cylinders, full or empty.
    - Contain a dedicated, continuously operating mechanical ventilation system that draws air from within 12 inches of the floor, with a means of make-up airprovided.
    - Include, where natural ventilation is permitted, a natural ventilation system consisting of two louvered openings, each having a minimum free area of 72 inches,² with one opening located 12 inches from the floor and one located 12 inches from the ceiling. NOTE: Louvered natural ventilation openings are not permitted in an exit access corridor.
  • Definitions
    - One E-size cylinder = 24.96 ft.³ 
    - Twelve E-size cylinders = 299.52 ft.³
    - Therefore, up to 12 E-size cylinders may be stored in any smoke compartment without special requirements for the room
    - One M-size cylinders = 250 ft.³
    - Therefore, one M-size and two E-size cylinders may be stored in any smoke compartment without special requirements for the room
    - Cylinders on gurneys, crash carts, etc., are  "in use" and not subject to the total count for 'in storage"
    - Cylinders in a rack are "in storage"
    - Empty cylinders are not considered part of "in Use" or "in storage"


Reference: NFPA 99; Sections 9.4.1, 9.4.2, and 9.4.3 (2005 edition)

Editor's note: click here to see the 2016 updated medical gas cylinder storage requirements.

Comments

1 comments on “Oxygen Cylinder Storage Requirements

Van Johnson (7/9/2014 at 3:45 PM)
Can "H" cylinders be stored on a steel grate type floor system? Or, should concrete be considered?

 

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