Don't ding the tanks!

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Posted by Wayne on December 13, 2002 at 08:28:39:

I think most of us know that we need to be careful with tanks. I was amazed by this little item which warns about putting date stamps on the side walls of scuba tanks. While this episode is pretty far away from our coast, I thought it was a good reminder of the fact tat we must treat our tanks with care.


RSPA-2002-11270 (Notice No. 02-8); TITLE: "Safety Advisory: Unauthorized Stamping of DOT specification Compressed Gas Cylinders"; Safety advisory notice; Published 10/10/2002; 67 FR 63191.
SUMMARY: This is to notify the public that RSPA has documented the unauthorized stamping of indentations in the side walls of high- pressure compressed gas cylinders by Blue Water Divers (Blue Water), Ltd., Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands. The cylinders are being used in the SCUBA industry. An undetermined number of the SCUBA cylinders or ``dive tanks'' owned by Blue Water Divers were stamped with month and year markings in the side walls of the cylinders. RSPA has determined that some of the cylinders may have been sold to individuals or U.S. companies and possibly are being used for transportation of hazardous materials in commerce in the U.S. All cylinders observed were DOT 3AL aluminum cylinders, but other cylinder types may be involved.
The Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) specifically prohibit stamping in the side wall of compressed gas cylinders, except DOT 3E cylinders, because doing so could compromise the structural integrity of the cylinder. The HMR prohibit the charging or filling of DOT specification or exemption cylinders with compressed gas or other hazardous materials and the offering for transportation of cylinders with markings stamped in the side walls. Furthermore, the HMR prohibit hydrostatic retesting and the return to service of cylinders that have been stamped on the side wall of the cylinder. Any cylinders that are marked on the side wall should be condemned in accordance with the HMR. Serious personal injury, death, or property damage could result from rupture of a cylinder.
The complete text of the Safety Advisory can be found at this link:

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