Since the National Fire Protection Association (NPFA) introduced the Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust (NFPA 652) in 2016, much attention has been focused on the problem of explosive dust in the industrial workplace. Unfortunately, the importance of compliance is still not getting through to some companies. According to a recent OSHA report, many companies have not yet taken steps to assure safety. The 2019 Mid-Year Combustible Dust Incident report revealed that between January and July in the U.S. and Canada:
- there were 92 fires and 20 explosions
- 36 injuries and one fatality resulted
- at least four of the incidents resulted in losses of more than $1 million
From a regulatory perspective, the urgency on this issue is now ramping up due to a new deadline approaching on September 7, 2020 for a major NFPA standard. NFPA 652 will now require that all facilities and operations handling combustible dusts or combustible particulate solids have a completed Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA).
Dust Hazard Analysis involves systematically reviewing the processes and areas of a facility where combustible particulate solids are present. This analysis allows for the identification of fire, flash-fire, and explosion hazards that exist within a facility. Locations are categorized into three basic categories:
- Not a hazard
- Could be a hazard
- Deflagration (or Fire, or Flash-Fire) hazard
For those facilities that fall into the second category, additional information or analysis will be required to determine if a hazard exists. Any hazards identified will require the identification of safe operating ranges. Any existing hazard management measures must also be listed, and an outline of hazard management options must also be developed and considered.
Glacier Technology can assist you with dust testing services for your materials using the latest standards and procedures. Our team will recommend combustible dust solutions to help you achieve compliance and avoid the risk of a dust explosion in your process.
Glacier Technology brings extensive experience and expert knowledge in developing combustible dust systems and in the successful navigation of OSHA and NFPA requirements. We are ready to assist you with a safe, compliant, and affordable system for your project. Contact us today!