OSHA Cites Company Following Combustible Dust Explosion

The agency has cited Inferno Wood Pellet Inc. of East Providence, R.I., following a combustible dust wood explosion and fire.

OSHA announced an enforcement action against Inferno Wood Pellet Inc., based in East Providence, R.I., following a combustible wood dust explosion and fire that occurred in August 2013. The ignition of wood dust began in the production room and migrated to a retention bin, which led to a building-wide explosion. No one was killed.

Following the incident, OSHA completed an inspection that found that the plant's employees were exposed to wood dust explosions, deflagrations, and other fire hazards "due to inadequate or absent preventive and protective measures in the wood pellet processing system and its equipment." The retention bin in particular lacked spark detection, explosion suppression, fire and explosion isolation, and explosion venting devices. In addition, conveyor systems carrying combustible wood products lacked spark detection and dust collection systems and dust segregation barriers were not maintained properly to minimize fire sources.

According to OSHA, other hazards at the plant included the accumulation of combustible wood dust on various surfaces, an incomplete fire prevention plan, and lack of dust-tight electrical equipment where combustible dust accumulated. Furthermore, an opening in the fire wall located between the production room and the chip room is what allowed a fireball to enter the chip room and spread the fire, the agency reported. The facility was cited for various violations unrelated to combustible dust as well, such as noise monitoring and respiratory protection.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • The Top 5 Safety and Technology Trends to Watch in 2019

    Get the latest on trends you can expect to hear more about in 2019, including continued growth of mobile safety applications, wearable technology, and smart PPE; autonomous vehicles; pending OSHA recordkeeping rulemaking; and increased adoption of international safety standard, ISO 45001.

  • Get the Ultimate Guide to OSHA Recordkeeping

    OSHA’s Form 300A posting deadline is February 1! Are you prepared? To help answer your key recordkeeping questions, IndustrySafe put together this guide with critical compliance information.

  • Safety Training 101

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common training questions.

  • Conduct EHS Inspections and Audits

    Record and manage your organization’s inspection data with IndustrySafe’s Inspections module. IndustrySafe’s pre-built forms and checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Industry Safe

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - January 2019

    January 2019

    Featuring:

    • PREVENTING ERRORS
      Production vs. Safety 
    • EMERGENCY SHOWERS & EYEWASH
      Meeting the Requirements for Emergency Equipment
    • CONSTRUCTION SAFETY
      The State of Contractor Safety
    • FOOT PROTECTION
      The Three Keys to Effective Chemical Management
    View This Issue