07 Aug Flour Considered Under DSEAR Regulations
DSEAR and the inclusion of flour
Flour is not currently covered under the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmosphere Regulations. But why should it be? Tristan Pulford will share why flour should be under DSEAR.
You will find many different substances in a bakery. You will find various tools and equipment, ingredients, and chemicals, but flour is the number one thing you will find throughout. The Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) will determine if the substances from your supplier are potentially explosive. When the results are unknown, you might find “a form combustible dust concentrations in the air”.
It is essential to remember that companies worldwide can sell the products with the same name but different formulations. That’s why we shouldn’t assume that the safety data sheets are the same between products and countries.
DSEAR must include all potentially flammable gasses, fluids, and dust which is why flour should fall under the same regulations.
INVESTIGATION & REPORTING
Should this happen, there will be a legal obligation to:
- Designate a potentially explosive and hazardous area.
- Ensure that all the equipment is ATEX rated and appropriately installed in those areas.
- All employees working in that area are well informed and trained on the hazards in the area.
- Maintenance must get done by someone who is trained in ATEX.
- All Risk Assessments and Safe Operating Procedures (SOPs) highlight all the potential explosive hazards.
- Create an Explosion Protection Document (EPD) with all the above clearly explained.
It is essential to determine whether the user can find an alternative to the substance or if it is required. Flour is a required substance in a bakery, and there is no substitute that can get used to reduce the risk of an explosion.
This is an essential step that requires analysis. Control the amount of flour that gets stored on-site. The person responsible for ensuring the area is a safe working environment must determine how much flour is used each day and how much should get stored.
The first two steps rarely get documented in DSEAR. While they can be brief, it is a vital and required component of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations.
Lastly, all employees who work in the space where potentially hazardous or explosive events can occur must be trained and properly informed.
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