Industrial Hygiene and Safety

Dust Hazard Analysis and Dust Management Plan

• Dust Characteristic Documentation • Literature Search and Documentation • Process and Ignition Source Assessment and Documentation • Design and Implement of Engineering and Administrative controls • Mitigate Fire and Explosion Hazards

When it comes to combustible dust, most people may associate a deflagration event (i.e. explosion/flash fire) with dust from wood processing, which is certainly a very real risk.  However, there are numerous industries that generate dust that has the potential to be become a combustible dust hazard, and several of these industries have experienced dust explosion/flash fires. Example Industries include but are not limited to:

  • Agriculture
  • Metals Processing
  • Chemical
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Pesticide
  • Rubber
  • Wood
  • Textiles
  • Plastics

If your company processes any of these products or materials, there is a potential for a "Combustible Dust" explosion

Conducting a Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA) is a highly imperative safety assessment for industries that produce dust in their processes. Development of the Dust Management Plan (DMP) is critical to reduce the potential for dust to become a combustion hazard. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) sets standards  for dust concentrations, temperatures, and other factors to protect against risks of igniting a fire or explosion.  NFPA 652 is the central document  for preventing combustible dust explosions and fires.  Per NFPA 652, September 7, 2020  is the deadline for all dust producing facilities to carry out a dust hazard analysis which requires dust characterization by testing or literature reviews.

Effective March 2008, OSHA incorporated Combustible Dust into its National Emphasis Program. In 2017, OSHA conducted 476 inspections and 319 resulted in OSHA citations with an average of $48,000 per citation relating to design and maintenance issues. OSHA issued these citations using the OSHA General Duty Clause.

RME Safety and Environmental, LLC (RME) has prepared numerous DHA's and DMP's for companies in the chemical, agriculture, brewery, and food processing industries. RME clients have successfully assisted its' clients in obtaining occupany permits as required by local governments and demostrating compliance with NFPA standards. DHA and DMP services offerd by RME include:

  • Site Assessment and Data Collection
  • NFPA Standards Assessment
  • Process Assessment and documentation
  • Dust characteristic documentation
  • Literature search and documentation
  • Ignition source assessment and documentation
  • Engineering and administrative control assessment and documentation
  • Housekeeping assessment and documentation