OSHA Safety Manuals | combustible dust
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Metal Polishing Metal polishing cleans, brightens, and restores solid or plated items made of gold, silver, stainless steel, brass, copper, aluminum, nickel, chrome, or other metals and alloys. Achieving a smooth and shiny finish requires tools like fixed, tabletop, or hand-held grinders, polishers and buffers. Solvents, acids, and various abrasive materials are used to degrease, clean, buff, and polish metals. Metal polishing can create a variety of hazards including chemical exposure, entrapment/entanglement, noise exposure, and ergonomics. For protection, workers should follow safety precautions and use personal protective equipment (PPE). Gloves, safety goggles, and face shields provide protection for the hands and eyes....

Dust Explosions When combustible or non-combustible materials are broken down into fine dusts or powders, they create a fire and explosion hazard affecting many operations and materials: sugar, flour, animal feed, plastics, paper, wood, rubber, furniture, textiles, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, paints and resins, dyes, coal, and metals. To prevent fires from dust explosions, control the “dust explosion pentagon.” This includes the traditional fire triangle: fuel, heat, and oxygen along with a dust cloud and enclosed space. Keep dust levels (fuel) in the workplace to a minimum with dust control and housekeeping. Control flame and ignition sources (heat) such as pilot lights, open flames,...

Wood Dust – It’s Not Just a Nuisance The wood dust created by cutting, shaping, and sanding wood is certainly a nuisance. However, wood dust can be a serious hazard to both health and safety if not properly controlled. Respiratory effects are the primary health concern. Inhalation of excessive dust can cause nasal irritation and bleeding, inflammation of the sinuses, wheezing, prolonged colds, and decreased lung function. Some species of wood are sensitizers: after repeated exposure, one can become allergic to the dust. This frequently leads to the development of asthma. Western red cedar is a well-known sensitizer and asthmagen. Skin and eye...