Paper Mill Fined $150,000 after Dust Explosion Burned Worker

A boiler was providing heat for a paper mill during the winter. In the days before the incident, workers had been cleaning up the plant in anticipation of its closure. They’d swept up to 15 wheelbarrow loads of fine, dry wood dust and dumped it into the conveyor system. At that time, the boiler was running on natural gas. As the dry wood dust was travelling on the conveyor, it was ignited by an undetermined source and a dust explosion occurred. A fireball burned a worker’s body. It was determined that protective measures for dealing with explosive hazards weren’t in place. As a result, the paper mill was fined $150,000 [Resolute FP Canada Inc., Govt. News Release, Jan. 29, 2016].