Using reusable IBC tote is preferable since it is cost-effective for the chemical producers and also their consumers.
In addition, the usage of reusable IBC tote can reduce plastic waste compared with one-time IBC tote.
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However, care should be taken that without proper handing, the usage of reusable IBC tote especially for hazardous chemicals like hydrogen peroxide, can potentially result in safety problems.
Potential Safety Problem with Reusable IBC
The following incident is a fact that without proper handling reusable IBC will generate safety hazards.
Besides, there are other potential safety problems related with improper handling of reusable IBC tote:
- chemical spills
- hazardous chemical exposures
- heavy load falling
Also, an unintended chemical reaction will occur if two incompatible chemicals accidentally mixed in the reusable IBC tote.
Reusable IBC Tote Safety Tips
Follow the following safety tips to stay safe while using the reusable intermediate bulk containers.
Tips #1 Use 1 IBC tote for 1 chemical
Fill only 1 chemical product for every reusable IBC tote. It is because there is a mixing problem if IBC washing is not complete.
Moreover, the risk is high enough if the chemicals can react to each other, such as H2O2 and NaOH.
It is very dangerous.
Tips #2 Wash before use
Never assume that the reusable IBC tote returned from your customer is clean, ready to use.
Wash the IBC tote before every use with water or other suitable washing media.
If it is still dirty, it may contaminate the product or cause the product to decompose.
Tips #3 Inspect Before Filling
Make sure that the bottle and drain valve in good condition, do not leak.
Besides that check also the frame and pallet are also in good condition. Do not force to use damage IBC tote because it is very dangerous.
Tips #4 Limit the Life Span
A reusable IBC tote has a limited life span. Determine its life span clearly. Never wait until it is broken or leaking.
If you are unsure just ask the IBC maker recommendation regarding determining the life span.
Do not forget to give a clear identity for each reusable IBC tote. With that identity, you will easily recognize its life span.
Tips #5 Do not use contaminated IBC tote
Do not use contaminated IBC tote with incompatible chemical with the product even though its life span is still long.
Tips #6 Do not use damage IBC tote
Sometimes, due to cost consideration or to keep the delivery schedule, the damaged IBC tote is still used. Stop using damaged IBC since it is very dangerous.
Tips #7 Record the reusable IBC tote traffic
Managing 20 pieces of reusable IBC tote is a lot of easier than managing 1,000 reusable IBC tote.
That’s why having a good record of all reusable IBC tote activities is very helpful in managing huge amounts of IBC tote.
Without good management, it can be a case where unreliable IBC tote will be used again.
Tips #8 Separate the IBC tote storage
Separate the storage location for each reusable IBC tote: dirty IBC, IBC after washing, damaged IBC, and new IBC tote to prevent mixed usage.
In addition to this is to use different labelling. It will make your job a lot of easier.
Tips #9 Limit the stacking level
Take a look at the intermediate bulk container specification. Make sure its maximum stacking level. Limit the stacking level especially with filled IBC tote.
Overload will cause the IBC tote life span shorter than expected. Stik to follow the maker recommendation.