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Dust Explosion Leaves Two Workers Severely Injured in Phoenix


EMSL Analytical offers combustible dust testing solutions to help prevent workplace injuries, deaths and property destruction.
Cinnaminson, NJ, September 20th, 2012
Last week, two workers from a Phoenix design business were severely injured when a dust explosion occurred while they were cleaning wood dust from the loft area of the business.  The injured workers were taken to a local hospital suffering from 2nd and 3rd degree burns.
Wood dust is a common cause of combustible dust explosions in the work environment.  They occur when wood dust, which are fine particles that present an explosion hazard, are suspended in air and come into contact with an ignition source.  When there is a sufficient quantity and concentration of the wood dust it can cause rapid combustion known as a deflagration. When the event is confined to an enclosure environment, such as in a building, the resulting pressure rise may cause an explosion.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed a list of recommendations for businesses that generate dust hazards.  They include:

  • Implement a hazardous dust inspection, testing, housekeeping, and control program;
  • Use proper dust collection systems and filters;
  • Minimize the escape of dust from process equipment or ventilation systems;
  • Use surfaces that minimize dust accumulation and facilitate cleaning;
  • Provide access to all hidden areas to permit inspection;
  • Inspect for dust residues in open and hidden areas at regular intervals;
  • If ignition sources are present, use cleaning methods that do not generate dust clouds;
  • Use only vacuum cleaners approved for dust collection; and
  • Locate relief valves away from dust deposits.

One of the leading combustible dust testing laboratories that provides services to prevent these types of injuries and fatalities is EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Wood dust hazards are created in so many industries in this country,” reported Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President, Marketing at EMSL Analytical.    “It’s critical that these businesses pay attention to the risks and prevention methods to avert injuries, deaths and the destruction of property.  EMSL can help with combustible dust testing services for wood dusts and many other materials.”
EMSL recently sponsored an educational video about combustible dust hazards that can be seen at:
To learn more about combustible dust testing services please visit, call (800)220-3675 or email .
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public.  The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies. 


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 dust testing
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