October 17, 2017

18/10/2017: Dust controls and the implications of NFPA standards

by J.Tom Wright, Director of Process and Installation, Kice Industries

What is dust?
A dust particle is a fine particle that is released and/or transported into the air either through entrainment with a product, displacement of air because of a product, in conveying air and/or in other processing equipment.

It can create issues such as:
• Product degradation or loss
• Health issue for workers
• Safety issue for assets and facilities
• Sanitation and infestation control
• Maintenance
• Equipment life expectancy
• Retention of valuable product
 

The nature of dust
Microscopic airborne particles are released into the air at various stages of the milling process, especially where raw grain enters the initial grinding area, but the sifting and packaging areas can also generate a lot of particulate matter.

Every area along the line where product is handled generates dust that needs to be contained. Combustible dust explosions are a risk in many areas of a facility. Facilities create dust particles that can become airborne and dispersed throughout the plant. It’s when these particles are in a combustible environment that they represent a significant risk for an industrial accident.

The serious hazards associated with handling fine dusts and powdered materials may be overlooked by many plant personnel because they are not fully understood. The presence of dust in a factory is now at the top of the list of items to inspect during an audit.

Facilities must now implement a strategic plan for managing combustible dust at their locations and be proactive in mitigating these dust issues. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) sets standards and codes to protect buildings against fire and explosion risks, and the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) is enforcing these standards with increasing vigilance.

Regulatory standards (NFPA) and what it means for dust control NFPA 652
Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust, 2016 Edition was issued by the NFPA in 2015. The scope of the standard is to provide the basic principles of and requirements for identifying and managing the fire and explosion hazards of combustible dusts and particulate solids.

The intent is to provide overarching minimum requirements for combustible dust and to reference the appropriate specific NFPA standards for a given industry or material that is being handled, but it does not supersede those existing standards.

Read the full article, HERE.

Visit the Kice Industries website, HERE.
 

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine Milling and Grain
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.


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