There are some requirements of flammable cabinet and one of them is the existence of ventilation. However, it is actually not a must to add ventilation. It must be added when it is really needed. If adding ventilation is not necessary, the cabinet should be without any ventilation. This will be good for the chemical substances that are kept inside the flammable cabinet storage. So, when do we need to add ventilation? Here is the explanation.
Add Ventilation for Flammable Cabinet or Not?
According to NFPA, the National Fire Protection Association Code 30, adding ventilation for flammable cabinet is not necessary in order to give more protection from fire. The main concern of this cabinet is protecting some flammable substances from a fire outside. Thus, the ventilation may disturb this main function in protecting the liquid from the fire outside. Therefore, it is not recommended for anyone to design the cabinet with ventilation and keep some flammable substances inside it.
However, based on some safety and health reasons, vented cabinet is also acceptable. The AHJ states that flammable cabinet may sometimes require venting. On the other hand, there will be special requirement if the ventilation does need to be installed. It should have the openings that are ducted to certain safe location directly. They can also be directed to certain treatment device which is created to control the volatile organic compounds.
Basically, it is not deniable that vented flammable cabinet is not recommended. However, there is a tolerance if one needs to vent the cabinet. The decision should be firstly conferred with the AHJ. There are some requirements that should be met. They include the characteristics for the material for the exhausting, the distance between the cabinet and ignition sources, the openings of the buildings where the cabinet is added, the characteristics of the dispersion, some possibilities of accumulated vapor that follows discharge, and the possibilities of certain discharge volume to let the ignitable substances reach the ignition source.
The flammable cabinet must have some shelves, indeed. There is not certain requirement of adding flammable cabinet shelves. They should be able to accommodate some bottles containing flammable liquid. On the other hand, an additional element for the cabinet, ventilation need to meet all of the requirements mentioned previously. When the AHJ requires a vented cabinet, then these requirements should be covered. These are based on the NFPA guidelines and it will be better to follow the rule.