DUST EXPLOSIONS


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Industrial Accident Lawsuits

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), dust explosion accidents occur rather frequently in some industrial settings. Workplace explosions can cause wrongful deaths, burn injury, brain injuries and other serious injury.

OSHA says there are a number of materials that can produce an explosive environment, combining combustible dust, compact areas, oxygen and an ignition source.

Combustible dust explosion accidents typically occur in two waves: the primary explosion, held in an enclosed space where dust burns and releases gasses. A second wave, or secondary explosion, may occur when additional dust becomes suspended in the air and ignites.

Many workers are unaware of the potential explosion threat, and employers often do no train employees on the serious hazards in their facility. Industries commonly at risk of explosion accidents include:

  • Fertilizer plants
  • Processing factories
  • Manufacturing facilities
  • Tobacco plants
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Furniture plants
  • Pesticide facilities
  • Coal factories
  • Dye factory
  • Metal processing location
  • Pulp and paper processing plant
  • Recycling operation
  • Woodwork industry
  • Fossil fuel power generator plant
  • Farms
  • Grain silos
  • Warehouses
  • Plastic plant

Joe Lyon is a Workplace injury lawyer and Industrial accident attorney reviewing burn accident and dust explosion lawsuits for injured plaintiffs.

Causes of Dust Explosion Accidents

Combustible materials that have led to industrial workplace explosions in the past have included:

  • Metals
  • Dyes
  • Textiles
  • Rubber
  • Pesticides and fertilizers
  • Wood
  • Plastics
  • Tobacco
  • Coal

Dust Explosion Prevention

A workplace explosion can cause employee deaths, injuries, and property damages. OSHA recommends a thorough workplace hazard assessment of all materials, operations and work areas. Safety agencies suggest taking the following precautions:

  • Locate relief valves away from dust deposits
  • Use appropriate electrical equipment and wiring
  • Control static electricity
  • Control ignition sources like smoking, open flames, and sparks
  • Control mechanical sparks and friction
  • Separate heated surfaces from dusts
  • Open areas where dust may collect
  • Create a program to inspect for and test for the presence of dust
  • Use dust collection systems and filters
  • Use explosion proof vacuum cleaners
  • Implement a preventative equipment maintenance program
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Defective products on the market present safety and health hazards for adults and children. Cheap and defective products may pose explosion, fire and burn risks; electrocution, strangulation and choking risks; and severe health risks. The manufacturers of industrial and consumer products have a duty to foresee potential injury and properly design and test products before they are released.

Companies must also properly warn workers and consumers of any risks associated with their products. Any failure to protect consumers that results in accidents and injury can lead to lawsuits filed by plaintiffs and their product liability lawyer.

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