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WorkSafeBC expands wood dust cleanup

At least 11 sawmill sites in the Interior still had hazardous dust levels following fatal explosions

WorkSafeBC has expanded an order to clean up wood dust that is an explosive hazard to include panel and wood pellet plants.

The order released today also includes pulp and paper mills.

The workplace safety agency already ordered the cleanup of sawmills in April after two deadly explosions in northern B.C. earlier this year killed four workers and injured dozens.

“Wood processing and paper product operations have been selected because of their high risk of combustible dust explosion due to large amounts of dust produced or handled in these facilities,” Betty Pirs, vice-president of prevention services, said in a news release. “Like all WorkSafeBC inspections, orders will be issued to employers based on violations observed during the inspections,” she said.

WorkSafeBC plans to have the first round of inspections of the 280 new plants complete by late August.

The inspections will focus on dust cleanup, ventilation and dust control issues.

In a first-round blitz of sawmills in early May, at least ( Read more … )

SourceThe Vancouver Sun

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