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How Does an Explosion Occur?



Explosions at industrial operational facilities often result in fatalities or serious injuries causing significant property damage, not to mention the wider-reaching financial and environmental impacts. Therefore, it is crucial that stringent mechanisms and protocols are in place to mitigate and prevent such explosions in hazardous environments. While strict adherence to safety protocols including the proper handling, storage, and transportation of volatile substances is a must, investing in and installing the best explosion-proof equipment in Singapore is a key consideration when it comes to hazard mitigation. Let’s look at the common causes of explosions in hazardous areas and how proper preventive measures can benefit the safety and wellbeing of your premises and employees.


What is an Explosion?

As we all know, three main elements should be present in order for an explosion to occur. They are fuel or a combustible substance, oxygen, and an ignition source. Often referred to as the ‘fire triangle’, when these three are present in the correct proportions, there is a higher chance that a slight mishap could lead to a potential fire or explosion. Removing and disturbing any one of these elements is the key to preventing and controlling explosions.


Causes of Explosions and How Explosion-Proof Equipment Can Help

Oil refineries, chemical plants, offshore oil rigs and nuclear power plants all have one thing in common – they are all categorised as high-hazard environments. Therefore, it is essential that proper measures are in place to prevent explosions and in order to do so, we need to first identify the potential triggers of explosions.


1. Flammable gases, liquids, and solids


Hazardous areas often house one or more flammable substances such as solvents, gasoline, butane, etc., and this increases the risk of fire or explosion. With combustible substances readily available, a simple spark or heat from an ignition source has the potential to set your facility ablaze. By investing and installing explosion-proof equipment in Singapore, you can mitigate the risks and ensure the safety of your operations.


2. Ignition Source


Ignition sources come in many different forms. Sparks, open flames, hot surfaces, and electrical equipment are the most widely associated contributors to industrial explosions. When electrical equipment malfunctions, owing to inadequate maintenance or improper installations, this poses a significant danger to your facility and your employees. By installing explosion-proof equipment, you can ensure that you leave no room for such mishaps.


3. Blocked Vents


Poor ventilation systems can lead to the accumulation of flammable substances in confined spaces. When these substances reach the lower explosive limits (LEL) and when exposed to an ignition source such as an electric spark, the chances of an explosion occurring are dangerously high. This is one more reason why you must ensure that you meet the regulatory guidelines set forth for hazardous environments and opt to install ATEX or IECEx-certified explosion-proof equipment in Singapore.


4. Inadequate Training on Safety Procedures


Irrespective of installing the best explosion-proof equipment in Singapore, if your staff is not properly trained in the relevant safety protocols, there still exists a chance that an incorrect decision could result in a potential fire or explosion. It is therefore crucial to provide comprehensive training to all employees working in hazardous environments. A strong safety culture is absolutely vital for preventing explosions. Adequate training in handling hazardous materials, proper use of equipment, and emergency response protocols will ensure the safety of your employees, equipment, and premises.


Singapore Regulations for Hazardous Work Environments

As an industry or business operating in hazardous environments, it is important that you stay updated with relevant regulations and standards governing the protocols. The specific requirements for explosion-proof equipment in Singapore are governed by various authorities and industry standards, as defined below.

1. Occupational Safety and Health Division (OSHD): This agency provides guidelines and regulations related to the use of explosion-proof equipment in various industries.

2. Singapore Standards (SS): The SS specifies technical requirements and test methods for various products, including explosion-proof equipment in Singapore.

3. Workplace Safety and Health Act (WSHA): This Act sets out the guidelines for the safety and health of all employees and also provides general requirements for the management and prevention of fire and explosions.

Our ex-proof equipment experts at Lumenex Asia are highly trained in these protocols and will gladly walk you through the regulatory compliance required by your operations/facility.


Contact Lumenex for the Best Explosion-Proof Equipment In Singapore

A proactive approach to safety is essential for creating and maintaining a secure working environment in hazardous areas. An essential first step in adhering to industry regulations and standards is to invest in reliable explosion-proof equipment for your facility.


Lumenex Asia has been at the forefront of the supply, installation and maintenance of explosion-proof equipment in Singapore since 2016. Whether you are looking to purchase ATEX and IECEx-certified ex-proof lighting, ex-proof cable glands and ex-proof enclosures, or looking to upgrade your existing explosion-proof equipment, our experts can help you. Contact us today for an obligation-free consultation.

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