Laboratory Safety
Legitimate Requirements Relating to the Approval, Examination and Hydraulic Testing of Gas Cylinders
Storage of Time Sensitive Chemicals
Proper Use of Biological Safety Cabinets
December 2012
Legitimate Requirements Relating to the Approval, Examination and Hydraulic Testing of Gas Cylinders

Gas cylinder is a common commodity that you can easily find in both teaching and research laboratories. Our University currently has around 950 compressed gas cylinders installed in different laboratories around the campus. Most of these gas cylinders are supplied to us via major local gases companies and their sources come from gas manufacturers all over the world.

The statutory regulations governing the use of gas cylinders in Hong Kong are the Dangerous Goods (General) Regulations Chapter 295B (DG(G)R) which are enforced by the Fire Services Department. The following are some important excerpts of the regulations:

Regulation 64 of the DG(G)R - No person shall use, cause or permit to be used, for the storage of any gas, any cylinder or other container except of a type appropriate to the storage of such gas and approved by the Authority.

Regulation 66(1) of the DG(G)R - No person shall use any cylinder, or cause or permit any cylinder to be used, to contain any permanent or liquefied gas unless such cylinder has been tested and examined within the preceding 5 years by a person approved by the Authority for that purpose.

Regulation 66(5) of the DG(G)R - After testing pursuant to the provisions of the regulation 66(1) and before refilling, the cylinder shall be stamped in such manner as to indicate by whom and on what date the testing was carried out and the pressures to which the cylinder was subjected at each test performed.

Most of the gas cylinders in our University are supplied on a monthly rental basis. Apart from the cost of the gases content, departments have to pay the rent for the gas cylinders supplied to their laboratories until the gases are used up and the cylinders are returned to the suppliers. These gas cylinders are the property of the respective suppliers and it is their responsibilities to get approval, perform examinations and testing of the gas cylinders to fulfill the statutory requirements as stated above.

Upon receiving the gas cylinders from suppliers, the Center of Laboratory Supplies (CLS) will check the stamp on the gas cylinders to make sure that the latest test date has not exceeded the 5 years’ schedule and will mark the test date on the cylinder tags attached to the cylinders for easy inspection/reference. However, as the consumption rate of gases varies with different usage, some gas cylinders may remain in a laboratory for more than a year. Therefore, user should check the test date of the gas cylinders regularly to ensure that it has not exceeded the 5 years period. If user find a gas cylinder that has the test date expired or any gas cylinders not for further use, please call CLS (ext. 6884) to collect them from the laboratories. CLS will collect and return the cylinders to the respective suppliers for necessary tests and examinations. Further information concerning the regulations can be found at

Test date in February 2012 and to be retested in 2017
Latest test date in 2nd quarter of 2012