In this issue of Milling and Grain we are pleased to feature yet another dust explosion special, featuring several companies who specialise in the safe handling of raw materials, discussing crucial safety tips for those working in the industry.
Dust explosions might be a risk that people don't necessarily think poses a significant threat to the food industry but in reality, as our articles explain, the threat to human lives working every day in flour mills or farms is very real and dust explosions with flour can wreak devastating effects.
Flour isn't even the only material in the food industry that can explode when subjected to a source of ignition; instant coffee, sugar, potato powder, soup powder and custard powder are just another few materials that can also cause massive explosions. Finely spraying oils and micro-dosing feed also creates a risk of explosions, reflecting that this risk can affect everyone in the industry in some manner, no matter what aspects of the food or feed process you work within.
Thankfully, there are a variety of methods and solutions to significantly reduce the risk of dust explosions occurring, which our articles later in this issue will discuss in depth. Some of the best preventative methods for dust explosions include dust explosion relief vents, explosion isolation devices and good conveying systems with anti-explosion measures. Cleaning your facility thoroughly and keeping away any sources of potential ignition is also crucial to minimise risks of explosions.
As awareness of this danger increases, it is comforting to see that so many more companies are now working on solutions to make this threat a problem of the past. There is plenty of information available online and various companies and organisations are also available to help facility managers discuss the best methods for keep their facilities safe.