The Chris Mee Group is the exclusive provider for the IOSH Explosion Safety Management training course in Ireland. This three day course is accredited by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).

What are the Aims of the IOSH Explosion Safety course?

The aim is to give participants technical knowledge on the following topics;

  • Ignition sources,
  • Flammability data
  • The basic principles of different types of protection give participants useful knowledge and insight into the design of installations and assessment of explosive atmospheres:
    • Containment,
    • Separation,
    • Construction,
    • Design

The course will also give participants an understanding of the requirements for equipment inspection, testing and maintenance.

Who does this course benefit?

The IOSH Explosion Safety Management course would be of particular benefit to Health & Safety Managers and Safety Personnel, Project Managers, E&I Engineers, Design Engineers, Maintenance Personnel, Plant Supervisors and Operators requiring the core knowledge to work safely in potentially explosive atmospheres and compliance with the requirements of the ATEX Directive. This course is recognised by Engineers Ireland and will lead to 3 cpd points.

But I thought that explosions only occur in Pharmaceutical industries?

The consequences of explosions is significant in terms of injury, loss of life, environmental impact and economic impact. When we think of explosions we normally associate them with the pharmaceutical industry and in the Petrochemical industry, e.g. Hickson Chemical Plant, Ringaskiddy in 1993 and the Texas City Refinery explosion in 2005.

What isn’t commonly known is that statistics show that almost a third of all explosions reported are within the Food & Animal feed industry. Powdered food such as instant coffee, dried milk, flour, soup powder, custard powder, sugar, grains, wood etc. and many more are flammable and can explode when in fine dust form e.g. Imperial Sugar Mill Explosion 2008, West Fertilizer Plant Explosion 2013.

Common locations of explosions in industry include; product handling systems, elevators, silos, drying, cyclones, milling, grinding, filter plants and dust handling systems. A cloud of finely dispersed dust, once within the explosive range, in the presence of air only requires a source of ignition (with enough energy) to initiate a primary explosion. The effect of explosions within closed vessels is increased due to confinement and turbulence.

Following a primary explosion within a piece of plant a secondary explosion may occur in the general work area if there is poor house-keeping standards i.e. fine dust has accumulated on flat surfaces. This dust is then is dispersed in the air, finely suspended cloud and ignited by the fire from the primary event.

Ignition of an explosive atmosphere may come from many sources; fires, exothermic or biological reactions, friction, hot work, hot surfaces, mechanical, electrical sparks , static discharge, smoking or any number of other potential ignition sources.

In Ireland to relevant piece of legislation is the Safety, Health & Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulation Part 8 Explosive Atmospheres at Places of Work. To comply with this regulation employers must:

  • Identify potential explosion hazards, gas, dust & solvents
  • Classify work areas where an explosive atmosphere may occur
  • Carryout an explosion safety risk assessment
  • Prepare an Explosion Protection Document which outlines how you manage your explosion hazards

Where possible the safety management principles should follow:

  • Prevention of the formation of potentially explosive atmospheres
  • Prevention of the ignition of the potentially explosive atmospheres
  • Restrict the effects of an explosion to a negligible level.

Further IOSH Explosion Safety information and Public course dates.