Ask The HvacMan
Air Grilles
Air Diffusers
Air Quailty
All Air Systems
All Water Systems
Building .Managament Systems ..BMS
Cooling Towers
Cooling Load Calculation
Energy Saving
Duct ,Smacna
Dampers ,Air
Dust Collection
Fire Dampers
Glass Selection
Heat Exchangers,water
Heat Recovery
Heat Tracing Systems
Hepa Filters
Hvac Applications
Humidifiers / Dehumidifiers
Insulation , Duct
Insulation , Pipe
Insulation , Sound
Nano Tech.,In Building
Occupancy Sensors
Pneumatic Conveying
Pool Ventilation
Process Piping
Radiant Heating
Refrigerant Systems
Solar Collectors
Steam Generation
Tables & Charts Gnr.
VAV Sytems
VRV Systems
Solar Collectors
Flat Plate Collectors
Evacuated Tube Collectors
Concentrating Collectors
Transpired Collectors
Solar Control Systems
Standalone Systems
Grid Connected Systems
Hybrid Systems
Back-up Systems
Solar Cells
Solar Arrays
Change Controller
Hybrid Systems
Grid Systems
Water Pumping
Using Wind Energy
Enviromental Aspects
Buyer's Guide
Save Energy
Solar Water Heating
Solar Electric Systems
Wind Turbines
Passive Solar Heating
Passive Solar Cooling
Building Material
Water Conservation
Ground Source Heat-Pumps
Green Hotels

Glass &Windows Selection

8/28/2003 10:47:00 AM

Grain Dust Caused Explosion


House-Autry Mills was back in operation a day after an explosion shut the plant down and resulted in an evacuation, President and CEO Roger Mortenson said.

Mr. Mortenson said it appears that grain dust created the explosion in a room where grain and corn are washed. “It was a piece of equipment that was transmitting the grain dust,” Mr. Mortenson said.

“We think something somehow caused a spark. It’s very hot and creates its own friction I guess.

Something just created a spark and there was an explosion, but it was limited to just that one thing,” he said. The explosion knocked down wall panels that were designed to blow out, he said. “The room was designed with blowout panels, and they did their job,” Mr. Mortenson said.

The explosion occurred about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. No one was hurt. About 50 workers were evacuated from the building while fire departments from Four Oaks, Smithfield and Benson put out a fire caused by the explosion.

The explosion activated sprinklers that kept the fire confined to one room, according to Mr. Mortenson.

After water was swept and vacuumed, operations continued without a piece of equipment damaged in the blast, Mr. Mortenson said.

“We were able to circumvent that piece of equipment and we will get it repaired, replaced and certainly look at making sure we do things so such an incident happening again is not probable,” he said. “We will try to reduce all the possibilities of it happening again.”

Mr. Mortenson said an explosion hazard is usually associated with grain dust. House-Autry manufactures breaders, corn meals, hush puppy mix and biscuit and cornbread mixes. “Anytime you are transmitting grain, there is always dust,” he said. “I know from working in this business and from reading in the paper that grain dust, flour or corn dust does cause explosions.”

Mr. Mortenson said the damage to the equipment was probably about $10,000 although an insurance adjuster had not yet examined the mill. “I think it’s fairly minimal,” he said.

House-Autry employs about 60 people. The mill closed down its facility in Newton Grove and re-opened its Four Oaks facility in 2001, after 188 years in Sampson County. House-Autry’s growth means it can’t lose a day of operations, Mr. Mortenson said.

“We are just happy that it was minimized and we are back in business,” he said. “We are in 25 states and we are growing all the time, so we have to be back doing what we are doing.”



  Discuss on the Message Board
Legionnare Disease
Energy Saving
Control Software
Hotel Design Books

Hotel Design