Industrial Fire Journal - Fire & Rescue - Hemming Group Ltd
CSB hold public meetings on three accidents at the Hoeganaes Plant
Published:  22 November, 2011

CSB held a public meeting November 16, 2011, in Gallatin, Tennessee, to release findings and draft recommendations into three combustible iron dust related accidents that occurred at the Hoeganaes Plant in 2011.

The findings related to three iron dust flash fires that occurred over a five month period in 2011 at the Hoeganaes facility in Gallatin. Two workers were killed in the first iron dust incident on January 31, 2011, and the second iron dust incident on March 29, 2011, injured another employee. The third incident, a hydrogen explosion and resulting iron dust flash fires, claimed three lives and injured two others on May 27, 2011. 

At the meeting the CSB investigative team presented on the circumstances of the accident to three CSB board members and the public. The Board asked questions of the team in front of the audience and then invited comments from members of the public. The meeting was videotaped and an official transcript will be included in the investigative file. Only after a vote of the Board will the investigation results be final.

Following the presentation of the CSB investigation team, a panel of outside witnesses were invited to speak on a number of issues related to the investigation. These included Dr. Robert Zalosh, former professor at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and an independent expert on combustible dust; Professor Paul Amyotte of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia; Mr. John Cholin, P.E., who investigated a similar incident in 1992 at a Hoeganaes manufacturing facility in New Jersey; and Mr. Bruce Johnson of the International Code Council, the developer of the fire code followed in Tennessee.

A copy of the presentation is available below.

File: CSB presentation (411k)