Vapours, mists, combustible dust and flammable gases can create an explosive atmosphere. It can cause an explosion when a source of ignition mix with enough amount of hazardous substance and air.
An explosion is an ever-present danger that can cause serious injuries, loss of life and other costly damage. How do we prevent and manage the release of hazardous substances? And also, how do we avoid the source of ignition?
The cause of the fire and the release of dangerous substances can be prevented by using the correct equipment to reduce the risk.
The explosive environment is present in work-places that handle organic dust, or a workplace where flammable products are manufactured. Also, places, where there are activities involving the release vapours and combustible dust, are prone to explosion.
An explosive environment is characterised by an atmospheric condition with a temperature range -20c to 40c degrees and pressure of 0.8 to 1.1 bar.
The Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmosphere Regulations (DSEAR) mandate require employers to adhere to the regulations and policies to control the explosion associated with the explosive environment in the workplace.
What type of equipment should reduce the risk of explosion in the workplace?
ATEX–certified equipment controls and prevented the risk of explosion in an explosive atmosphere. It derives its name from the European Directives.
The Directive 99/92/EC, also known as the workplace directive on the minimum requirement for safety protection and improving the health of employees who work there and are exposed to the risk from the explosive environment. There are other guidelines that support the directives.
Directive 94/9/EC, also known as the ATEX Equipment Directive. The approximation of laws of members, states about the protective systems and equipment intended to be used in an explosive atmosphere.
To protect the workers against the risk of the explosions, employers must ensure to classify the explosive environment into zones. They must detail the classified zones with the features of the location and size.
Also, the atmosphere for that will work for the explosion-proof device. Classified zones must mention the specific hazardous substance like zone 0 to zone 2 relate to combustible fumes and gas. Zone 20 to zone22 refers to combustible dust.
Employers must classify the gas present in an explosive environment according to temperature and explosion groups. Also, the temperature and ambient should be organised into their various class of gas present in the unstable workplace.
They must protect the areas from any source of ignition. Employers must ensure to meet the requirement of Equipment and Protective Systems Intended for the environment. All electrical and non-electric sources of ignition, the equipment and the application must be considered.
Before selecting an ATEX Equipment, The company must consider some essential features and benefits of the ATEX Equipment as the valve, pump, and level sensor. Examples of ATEX Equipment, the type 8137 comes in two versions and The type of 6519.