Today's News / Facility Safety / Government Regulations

CSB chief: Explosion in China shows combustible dust danger

CSBStatement from Chairperson Rafael Moure-Eraso on the deadly consequences of combustible metal dust:

Friday’s reported metal dust explosion in Jiangsu, China, is another reminder of the tragic and deadly consequences of combustible dust accidents, a hazard with which the US Chemical Safety Board (CSB) is all too familiar. Just last month the CSB released its final report and safety video on the 2010 metal dust explosion and fire at the AL Solutions metal recycling facility in New Cumberland, West Virginia. This incident killed three workers and injured a fourth.

A spate of combustible dust accidents in U.S.

The AL Solutions incident is one of nine serious combustible dust incidents investigated by the CSB since 2003, including the Imperial Sugar disaster near Savannah, Georgia, in 2008 as well as three combustible dust incidents over a six month period in 2011 at the Hoeganaes facility located in Gallatin, TN. These nine explosions and fires caused a total of 36 deaths and 128 injuries. These tragedies include a 2003 incident at the Hayes Lemmerz manufacturing plant in Huntington, Indiana, which cast and machined aluminum automotive wheels. The series of explosions was fueled by accumulated aluminum dust, a flammable byproduct of the wheel production process. An explosion inside the plant’s dust collection system propagated back into the facility, where it ignited dust that had settled on horizontal surfaces. Plant mechanic Shawn Boone, 33, was killed in the explosion, and two others were injured.

OSHA urged to issue standard

I would like to take this opportunity to emphasize the CSB’s longstanding recommendation resulting from its2006 Combustible Dust Hazard Study to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to address this deadly hazard in the United States. Preventable combustible dust explosions continue to occur, causing worker deaths and injuries. From 2008 until 2013, the CSB documented 50 combustible dust incidents resulting in 29 fatalities and 161 injuries. In 2013 the Board designated the issuance of a general industry dust standard as the CSB’s first “Most Wanted Safety Improvement.”  The CSB believes it is imperative for OSHA to issue a comprehensive combustible dust standard for general industry with clear requirements for preventing dust fires and explosions.

About the CSB

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating serious chemical accidents. The agency's board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Scenes from the World of Safety

Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

11/4/14 2:00 pm EST

Eye Injuries: You rarely see them coming. Practical Solutions for reducing injuries to the eye.

The 3M Eye Injury Reduction webinar will provide an examination of how to help solve eye injuries in the workplace. This issue continues to challenge virtually every industry, and the solution is often times multifaceted. 3M will share some new tools and approaches to help you in solving this issue.

ISHN Magazine

ISHN1014_cover.jpg

2014 October

This issue features articles about PPE safety and OSHA standards

Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE ISHN STORE

M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - SEPTEMBER 2014

ISHN FDO SEPTEMBER 2014For Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. CHECK OUT THE SEPTEMBER 2014 ISSUE OF FDO HERE

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn Google + icon

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.