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Mitigating Combustible Dust Hazards

If your plant has grain dust accumulating in receiving and loading facilities, plugged duct work, or accumulation above 0.031” in process enclosures, there is a substantial risk to your facility.  NFPA 652 requires that the facility owner(s) complete a Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA) by Sept. 7, 2020 and progress each year prior.

At Schust, we help owners take it step-by-step.  Schust has been helping facility owners and operators safely mitigate combustible dust in their ventilation systems for decades.  Learn how Schust can help with mitigating combustible dust and what to do with your process afterwards.

Step One:  Inspection

Schust technicians visually inspect the current physical condition of dust collector(s), system components, and building areas containing potentially combustible dust.

  • Technicians document existing dust control systems air volume, static and velocity pressure, and filter pressure drop.
  • A process flow diagram is developed to illustrate all sources of potentially combustible dust.
  • Schust documents areas where combustible dust accumulation is an issue with your existing process.
  • If necessary, dust samples are collected and sent for testing to determine their combustion characteristics.

Step Two: Conduct a DHA per NFPA 652 standards

Schust, with decades of internal experience and in coordination with external consultants, can help facility owners perform a DHA based on the results of the inspection.  The DHA will first identify which parts of the process and stages of operation (steady state, start up, shut down, emergency shut down) represent fire, flash fire, and explosion hazards.  Then, Schust will move through the process equipment and enclosures and identify safe operating ranges to eliminate those risks.  As risks are identified that may require additional mitigation, like mechanical isolation, venting, or chemical suppression,  Schust can help plant owners decide which technologies are the most cost-effective way to keep the facility safe because of our experience with all approved suppression and venting suppliers.  Schust will document mitigating steps and provide a plan to complete it.

Step Three: Implement corrective actions

Schust is a long-standing partner for grain processing facilities and can assist owners in completing a DHA plan with combustible dust projects of all sizes, from minor hood adjustments to new complete dust collection systems with venting and chemical suppression.  In-house engineering, fabrication, and installation capabilities means plant owners have one partner in meeting NFPA requirements from start to finish.

 

Please note: Per NFPA 652, the plant/facility owner(s) are responsible for combustible dust that may be present in their facilities.  The owner(s) should consult with the local Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ).

 

DID YOU KNOW?

Over the last 35 years, there have been over 500 documented explosions at grain facilities and more than 180 fatalities.*

grain-silo-explosion
Haysville, Kansas, June 12, 1998 -- The south end of grain elevator damaged by an explosion. Photo by Phil Kirk/ FEMA News Photo

Contact our agriculture experts to discuss how Schust can help you with your ventilation project.

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