Effectively Controlling Coal Dust

According to the CDC, coal dust “has long been known to cause chronic respiratory disease,” and that “Apart from the obvious benefits from reducing ill-health, impairment, and disability; reduction in dust exposures in underground coal mining should correlate with reduction in compensation costs.”

Exposure to dust not only carries health risks and associated costs, but its maintenance time and costs are high as well. Coming up with an efficient way to reduce coal dust comes with the benefits of:

  • Decreased exposure to airborne particulates
  • Decreased risk of slips and falls
  • Decreased maintenance time and costs
  • Decreased wear on components and equipment (coal dust is an abrasive product that wears down equipment and increases the need for regular repair and replacement)

In this article, the Orlando Commission-Stanton Energy Center (SEC) is looked at as a case study, and a model for efficient and effective coal dust cleaning. Through various measures, SEC was able to significantly reduce maintenance time while creating a “cleaner, safer working environment.”

They installed a number of systems and procedures that made this all possible. These included systems to contain dust and eliminate spillage, equipment to absorb the force of falling dust, and belt tracking systems to further prevent spillage, reduce belt damage, and extend belt life.

They also replaced their “large, under-performing dust collector” with a high-efficiency air cleaner with an explosion-proof motor—extremely important, given the combustible nature of dust. The new cleaner also proved to be more energy-efficient, increasing their savings. In the end, all of their additions and upgrades meant the elimination of ‘clean-up and repair battles,’ and a better environment for everyone.

Anyone in the industry knows that making the workplace safer and more cost efficient is a win/win.

As leading suppliers of various products for the mining industry, we are constantly on the lookout for new and better ways for the industry to perform, and we are happy to answer any questions on this, or any related topic. Feel free to contact us today.

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