The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is an organization tasked with developing and maintaining fire protection and life safety standards in the United States and worldwide. In addition to subjects such as sprinkler design, flammable liquid storage, and emergency exit requirements, NFPA has standards that deal specifically with combustible dust; a topic that CTI has been focused on for over a decade.  There are several NFPA Standards that address combustible dust: NFPA 652 – Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust, is the overarching standard that applies to all facilities, and there are also several commodity-specific dust standards (e.g. 61 for agricultural and food, 664 for wood products, 484 for metals). CTI is a principal member of the NFPA 61 Technical Committee for Agricultural Dust and has worked with several of the other committees. All of these standards are changing, and CTI is here to help our clients understand what that will mean for them. Continue reading “Changes to Combustible Dust Standards”


On November 25, 2018, the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) issued an updated version of NFPA 45 – Standard on Fire Protection for Laboratories Using Chemicals. NFPA 45 includes information regarding fire protection requirements for laboratories, laboratory design, vent hood use, and safe quantities of flammable materials allowed to be stored and used in the laboratories. The 2019 edition of the standard includes minor changes from the previous 2015 version. Inspection, testing, and maintenance of fire-extinguishing systems in ductwork and chemical fume hoods has been revised from a specific time interval to a schedule that is deemed suitable for the type of system. Also, a minimum inspection frequency of 1 year has been added for chemical storage. The revision of the standard includes references to NFPA 30 – Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code for quantities of flammable and combustible liquids within liquid storage areas that are indoors.

Continue reading “Is Your Laboratory Compliant with OSHA and NFPA Requirements?”

Norcross, GA – Building on its 30+ year legacy as a leading environmental and safety engineering firm, CTI (Conversion Technology, Inc.) announces a new and exciting strategic partnership with industrial safety solutions manufacturer, Fike and the world’s leading bolted steel tank, silo and aluminum dome manufacturer, CST Industries.

CTI’s partnership with Fike and CST will provide the ultimate comprehensive dust explosion solutions for compliance with the new regulation for Combustible Dust, NFPA 652. The regulation covers a wide range of types of combustible dust used in many application areas across just about all the major industrial and agricultural markets. Continue reading “CTI, Fike and CST Join Forces to Address Combustible Dust and NFPA 652 Regulations”

Over the past several decades, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) as well as the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) have been expanding and enforcing regulations and standards designed to lessen the potential for disasters in facilities that handle combustible dusts. Any facility that processes or handles combustible solids or dusts, such as food products, wood, plastics, and metals should take preventative measures in identifying and managing the potential fire and explosion hazards present during normal operations at an industrial facility. A catastrophic incident of a facility failing to properly identify and mitigate the hazards associated with handling combustible dust is the explosion at the Imperial Sugar factory in east Georgia back in 2008. This combustible dust explosion killed 13 people and injured 40 more. This accident was entirely avoidable. Continue reading “Combustible Dust Regulation Updates”

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is charged with creating standards for fire prevention in North America. While they have no enforcement power of their own, Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs), including OSHA, will reference the NFPA standards in their own regulations. NFPA has had industry/commodity specific standards for combustible dusts for years, in some cases dating back to the early 1920’s. These include: Continue reading “NFPA Issues 2017 Revisions to Industry Specific Combustible Dust Standards”

Earlier this year, NFPA issued the 2017 edition of NFPA 499: Recommended Practices for the Classification of Combustible Dusts and of Hazardous (Classified) Locations for Electrical Installations in Chemical Process Areas. While “Chemical Process Areas” is identified in the title of the standard, the standard applies to chemical processing or mixing operations, which can include agricultural dusts, if mixing is occurring.The standard is a useful tool in classifying combustible dust areas as part of a Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA) as required by NFPA 652: Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dusts. Continue reading “NFPA Issues 2017 Edition of NFPA 499”

As originally published in CTI’s Compliance Matters Newsletter – Summer 2015. By: Chris Frendahl and Jeff Davis, PE

On September 1, 2015, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) issued NFPA 652, Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust. NFPA 652 is the first step to creating a single, unified combustible dust standard that would apply to all facilities.

A significant number of industrial accidents have been associated with combustible dust flash fires and explosions. Historically, the hazards from combustible dust are often overlooked, in part due to facilities not understanding the hazards of combustible dust. However, there are other cases where the hazards are overlooked due to complacency or a general attitude of “that can’t happen here.” Continue reading “NFPA Issues NFPA 652: Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust”

On January 18, 2016, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) published the 2nd draft report for NFPA 499: Recommended Practice for the Classification of Combustible Dusts and of Hazardous (Classified) Locations for Electrical Installations in Chemical Process Areas. It is now open for a Notice of Intent to Make a Motion (NITMAM) until February 19, 2016 for those on a Committee Comment, Second Revision, or Second Correlating Revision. The purpose of NFPA 499 is to provide information on classifying combustible dusts and locations and provide recommended practices on proper selection of electrical equipment in hazardous (classified) locations per NFPA 70, National Electrical Code. NFPA 499 is a compendium document to Chapter 5 (Article 500) of NFPA 70 and does not supersede any requirements of other NFPA standards (e.g. NFPA 61, 68, 69, 654, 664, etc.).

The significant changes for the 2016 revision includes classifications and definitions for the following: Continue reading “NFPA 499 Revision Update”

Title: NFPA 652 – The New Standard for Combustible Dust
Date: Thursday, December 03, 2015
Time: 02:00 PM Eastern Standard Time
Duration: 1 hour

In 2015, The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) released NFPA 652, a new, overarching standard for combustible dust that covers all materials – agricultural products, wood products, chemicals, etc. Continue reading “Free Webinar: NFPA 652 – The New Standard for Combustible Dust”

We would like to congratulate our Director of Engineering, Brian Edwards, for being appointed as a Principle on the NFPA Technical Committee on Agricultural Dusts (CMD-AGR), which is the committee that maintains NFPA 61- Standard for the Prevention of Fires and Dust Explosions in Agricultural and Food Processing Facilities.  As a consultant to industry with over 16 years experience,  Brian will sit on the committee as a Special Expert.