Storing Hazardous Chemicals in Shipping Containers

Secure and sturdy chemical storage facilities are required for all sorts of businesses and a converted shipping container, or one of our purpose-built chemical storage containers could be the ideal solution!

In this guide, we detail the options available if you are looking to store chemicals at your site.

Legal Requirements for Chemical Storage

In the UK businesses are legally required to store hazardous chemicals in a location that is secure and safe under C.O.S.H.H. regulations 2002. Depending on the products being stored then ventilation and protection against spillages may also be required. Full details of the regulations can be found on the government website.

Basic Chemical Stores

A basic chemical store is simply a secure (lockable) location to keep chemicals and paint. This could be as simple as a straightforward 10ft container with no additional modifications. Our refurbished 10ft containers are ideal for small scale chemical storage. We can supply racking/shelving to fit one of these containers if required – details on these links:

refurbished 10ft containers

10ft shipping container shelving kit 1, 1-side

10ft shipping container shelving kit 2, 2-sides

10ft shipping container shelving kit 3, 2-sides + end

Flat Packed Chemical Stores

A flat packed chemical store is a quick and easy way to provide chemical storage for your business or site. They come in sizes from 2m x 2m up to 6m x 2m. These stores have both high and low vents fitted to allow any fumes or gases to escape the store. The floors are wire mesh over a bunded spill tray to catch any spillages and prevent environmental contamination. Being flat packed we don’t need access for a 40ft-65ft truck to where you need it, we can deliver at the curb side and panels can be carried into even the most hard-to-reach places.

Our flat packed chemical storage units are supplied brand new and are quick and easy to install. They are manufactured from Galvanised steel for long life and feature a double locking system for security. The roof section has built-in gutters which channel rainwater to the four corners to drain. They also have lifting eyes included, so can be moved on site using these.

For more information and pictures of each size please use the below links:

Flat Pack Chemical Store 2×2 Metre

Flat Pack Chemical Store 3×2 Metre

Flat Pack Chemical Store 4×2 Metre

These flat pack stores can also come with an optional linking kit, allowing you to join 2 equal length sides on 2 separate units together, meaning you can have an 8m long x 2m wide unit, or a 4m wide x 4m long unit if needed (plus a range of other possible combinations)

Shipping Containers for Chemical Storage

As sturdy and secure steel boxes shipping containers are ideal for conversion into chemical stores. We can add vents in sizes and positions to suit and have a couple of different options for the floor to choose from. Our bunded floors can also be produced with the capacity you need according to what you’ll be keeping in it.


Depending on what you are storing inside you may need some additional ventilation. As some fumes are lighter than air and some heavier these vents are split with half at the internal floor line and the other half fitted to the top of the sides nearest the roof.  This will allow any escaped gasses to vent and not smother the user when they next come to open up the storage container. The number and size of vents needed will vary according to your storage plans, so we will work to your specification. We can supply vents in almost any size, and these are protected against rodent/insect ingress with wire mesh.


For some small scale uses with less dangerous chemicals a bunded floor may not be required. Most chemical stores will however need a protective bund to catch any spillages and prevent chemicals being released into the environment. This may be a legal requirement depending on the chemicals you are storing. We offer 2 types of floor conversions to allow for this requirement.

Our basic bunded floor is made by overlaying the original plywood floor with chequerplate steel, which is seam welded to give a watertight seal against the walls of the container. A door lip is then fitted, with a drain plug (to release safely any spillages). This method leaves a good floor for placing shelving etc on, but does mean that there’ll be a lip across the door to step over when going in/out of the container.

We can also fit a mesh floor over the top of this if needed. This means any spillages will be caught under the mesh floor for drainage and lessen the chances of slipping. The mesh floor will be at the same height as the door lip so removing this as a potential trip hazard.

Both methods of floor conversion will raise the floor height so please bear in mind that you may be stepping up 8-12 inches as you enter if you are considering a ramp or using any trollies/pallet trucks etc. in the container. The mesh floors are designed for pedestrians only and are not suitable for wheeled trollies or pallet trucks.

Please be aware it is your responsibility to ensure the floor and its operation meet the needs for the chemicals you are storing. For example the size of the sump or bund that you need may vary depending on the type of chemical and the size of container or canister storing each chemical.

Other Options

You may want to add a personnel door to your chemical store for easy access, or to have basic electrics fitted with lights and sockets. For certain storage needs then insulation may be called for. We can quote for these and all sorts of other options if required, please contact us using the details below and a member of our team will be happy to assist. offer the UK’s largest online range of shipping containers for sale with a nationwide network of storage and conversion yards and crane equipped delivery vehicles.

If you need a shipping container feel free to browse our online range of shipping containers for sale, which also includes our ranges of flat pack sheds, container canopies and more. You can also call us on freephone 0808 1234 215 any time 9am – 7pm weekdays and our team will be happy to discuss your requirements. Alternatively, you can use our online shipping container quote form or request a telephone callback. In both cases we aim to get back to you within 1-2 working hours (may take longer for more detailed quotes).

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