Dangers of Combustible Dust

January 31st, 2014 | in Industrial Vacuum


combustible dustIf you work in an industrial setting, you have likely had to deal with a great deal of dust. You probably think that dust is harmless, but that couldn't be further from the truth. Under the right conditions, dust can become combustible. That means that accumulated dust can cause a serious explosion. 


According to the United States Department of Labor, there were 281 combustible dust accidents between 1980 and 2005. Those incidents caused 119 deaths and 718 injuries. They also damaged industrial facilities. These explosions occurred because the dust was not properly cleaned up.

Industries at Risk

While combustible dust can form in a variety of industrial settings, some industries are more at risk than others. The industries with the most risk of combustible dust explosions are:

  • Coal
  • Dyes
  • Food
  • Fossil fuel power generation
  • Furniture
  • Grain
  • Metals
  • Paper
  • Pesticides
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Plastics
  • Pulp
  • Rubber
  • Textiles
  • Tobacco
  • Wood

While this list contains the industries that are most likely to have a combustible dust explosion, the issue can affect other industries as well. It's important to understand that materials that are not normally explosive can turn into combustible dust, so if you think that you workplace is in danger, you should take action.



You should never attempt to clean up potentially combustible dust on your own. You could put your life at risk, as well as the lives of other people in the building.

The capabilities of our personnel, our certificates of approval, and our long-term focus on innovation has driven our reputation for delivering cost efficient and flexible environmental contracting services and abatement of hazardous materials and from the early beginning, our expertise in industrial vacuum services.

Enviro-Vac is one of the largest privately owned hazardous materials abatement and decontamination contractors in Canada. They offer a full suite of services in hazardous materials abatement, decontamination and industrial vacuum services including negative pressure shrink- wrap containments and are available to work both small and large-scale projects across Canada. The head office is based in Surrey, BC.

If you have any questions about this article or would like to talk to us about hazardous materials abatement, decontamination, industrial vacuum services and industrial dust down or negative pressure shrink-wrap containments, please call us on our toll-free number, 1 (888) 296-2499.

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