By now most companies and people throughout the manufacturing sector have heard of Combustible Dust as it has become a widely discussed topic. As a review, combustible dust fires and explosions are caused when a combustible atmosphere of dust, or a layer of flammable solids, is introduce to an ignition source. This can be demonstrated by the fire triangle or explosion pentagon. These ignitions can be made worse if there are significant levels of dust accumulation present in surrounding areas, and hazard mitigation techniques are not properly utilized. One of the best ways to identify these dust fire and explosion hazards, as well as being the first step in putting a mitigation action plan together is a Combustible Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA). Besides being a great first step it is also a required one according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards 652 and 61. Continue reading “Combustible Dust Hazards and Abatement Techniques for the Wood Pellet Industry”
Most facilities that are handling combustible dusts are now familiar with the term “Dust Hazard Analysis” or “DHA” and understand that it comes from a standard issued by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), nfpa.org. The most referred to standard is NFPA 652 – Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust. From NFPA 652, the key requirements for conducting a DHA are: Continue reading “Combustible Dust Hazard Identification and the Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA)”
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”
Today, during the Technical Meeting at NFPA’s 2015 Annual Conference, there were two certified motions up for a vote related to the new NFPA Standard on Fundamentals of Combustible Dust – NFPA 652. One motion was to remove the requirement for a Dust Hazard Analysis, and the other was to delay the issuance of the Standard completely. Both motions were defeated by an overwhelming majority of the NFPA voting members, including myself. These votes were the last hurdle in the issuance of the Standard later this year.
NFPA 652 is the first step in developing a single, overarching standard to deal with fire and explosion hazards associated with combustible dust of all types and in all industries. Currently, there are several industry and commodity specific standards, such as NFPA 61 for agricultural dust and 664 for wood dust, that often lack consistency, leading to confusion among users, authorities having jurisdiction (e.g. OSHA), and safety professionals. The development of NFPA 652 intends to alleviate some of the confusion … eventually. Over the coming months, CTI will be writing articles, providing presentations at conferences and online, and consulting our clients with the specifics of the standard. If you are interested in staying in touch with these developments and other news, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to be included on our Newsletter list.