Combustible Dust

Hazard Control Technologies’ expertise in combustible dusts began with the PRB Coal Users’ Group and F-500’s unusual ability to resist flare-ups when being applied to burning coal dust.  Applying water causes a flare-up that can ignite nearby dust, leading to a secondary explosion.  In addition, F-500 EA was able to penetrate deeply into the fire and cool, preventing reignition.  Gradually, HCT was recognized in the power industry as a leader in combustible dust awareness training and hazard mitigation.  The same techniques perfected in the power industry for coal handling are applicable for other combustible dusts, such as grain, corn, rubber crumb, sugar, cotton, wood chips, sawdust, chemicals, metals and plastics.  OSHA recognizes the hazards in these industries and tries to create an environment of awareness, but all too often, attention is paid to matters of safety after an incident.

In addition to F-500 EA, HCT offers fire extinguishers and portable carts to deliver F-500 EA for conveyor belt fires or other small fires, piercing rods, training, incident management and emergency response preparedness programs.

Combustible Dust Awareness Training

HCT offers several courses designed for everybody involved with combustible dusts at a plant, including first responders and the local fire department.  Since dust is the problem, the courses cover the hazardous characteristics of dusts and how to safely handle them.  Housekeeping techniques are covered to prevent dust build-up and create a safe work environment.  Should an incident occur, HCT teaches what steps to take to safely mitigate the hazard.  If there is a potential for deep-seated fires in a silo or stockpile, piercing rod training can be included.

F-500 EA Piercing Rod System

F-500 EA does an excellent job extinguishing all combustible dusts.  Its ability to penetrate into the powder or granular allows it to extinguish the fire below the surface, but depending on the granular, eventually you run into a deep-seated fire.  Trying to empty a silo to remove a fire can result in an explosion or damage to equipment downstream.  The solution is to use a piercing rod.  A thermal imaging camera locates the hot spot and the piercing rod is inserted.  As the tip of the rod nears the fire, F-500 EA is injected to penetrate and cool the hot spot.  Training is available to familiarize first responders or local firefighters on this technique.

Emergency Preparedness and Response Program

HCT can visit your plant and assess your potential fire and explosion hazards and create a site survey.  Training of plant personnel and local firefighters would follow and HCT can help you write plant specific SOGs (Suggested Operating Guidelines).  In the case of an event, HCT can provide an on-site Incident Management Response Specialist to guide you to a safe and quick solution.


BFL_LE_PWR_TKO Dust Wash Housekeeping Nozzle_V2
BFL_F5_AM_F-500 Brochure_V1
BFL_PR_AM_Piercing Rods_V2


II_F5_AM_Silo Fire-Wood Dust
ART_NA_PWR_Blueprint for Disaster, Industrial Fire Journal, April 2009
TES_MP_PWR_A_AES Puerto Rico-Hot Spotss
TES_F5_PWR_Eon-UK, Kingsnorth Power Station, F-500 Benefits, Coal Silo Fires