Hazardous Materials Safety

EVERY year, FESA Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) fire-fighters bring under control about 70 significant incidents involving hazardous materials (HAZMAT) such as explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and gases, poisons, corrosive substances, radioactive materials and infectious materials.


Containing uncontrolled hazard materials is a complex task that takes into consideration the safety of the public, property, fire-fighters and the environment. Licensees of premises storing goods need to plan ahead to deal with incidents involving dangerous goods. Key elements of an emergency plan include:

  • keeping an inventory for dangerous goods on the premises
  • Documentation of what can go wrong with the storage of dangerous goods.

Guidelines on the preparation of an emergency plan are available from the Department of Industry and Resources (Guidance Note S310).

It is good practice to be well acquainted with appropriate procedures if a HAZMAT incident arises.
If hazardous materials are spilt inside a building:Warn people in the close vicinity

Evacuate the area
Ring 000
Ask for Fire Services and advise (where possible and without endangering yourself):

  • address of spillage
  • name of chemical and the UN number
  • amount of chemical split
  •  iform of chemical (solid, liquid, gas).

Do not:

  • Ignore the incident
  • Touch or breathe in the chemical.

If hazardous materials are spilt on the road:

Ring 000

Ask for Fire Services and advise (where possible and without endangering yourself):
location of spillage

  • name of vehicle/s
  • name of chemical and UN number
  • form of chemical (solid, liquid, gas)
  • any people trapped in vehicles
  • number of people affected or injured

Evacuate the area and move at least 100 metres upwind and warn approaching traffic

  • It is essential you do not:
  • Ignore the incident
  • Touch or breathe in the chemical

Vehicles must be licensed to carry bulk dangerous goods and the drivers of those vehicles must also have special licences. Vehicles carrying packaged dangerous goods do not require special licences but do need to adhere to requirements.

Need more information

For more information on mandatory requirements for storage of dangerous goods, this brochure may be downloaded from FESA website at: www.fesa.wa.gov.au

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