The best way for companies to ensure worker safety and prevent accidents is to identify and control hazards on worksites. However, not all accidents can be predicted and prevented. In those cases, the best employers put in place protective mechanisms to keep people safe when the worst occurs. For example, to prevent injuries from worksite explosions, some hazardous sites have their team working in blast resistant buildings to avoid injuries and flying debris if a blast were to occur.
Performing a real-world blast test on a blast resistant building is one of the best ways to alleviate concerns about how a structure will react to a real disaster. No computer model can compare to seeing a building survive a blast with your own eyes.
Protecting employees from workplace hazards requires formal control mechanisms and detailed planning. The most effective way to accomplish this is to use a "hierarchy of controls," a step-by-step process that allows safety managers to choose all the relevant tools needed to eliminate hazards or protect employees from dangers.
One of the most devastating petrochemical plant explosions in U.S. history occurred in 1989 when a petrochemical complex experienced a polyethylene leak, resulting in a flammable vapor cloud. Sometime after lunch, the cloud was ignited, causing a series of explosions and fires that killed 23 workers and injured over 130 more.
Protecting workers from on-site hazards is a complex task. However, soliciting hazard protection analyses and addressing as many risks as possible can protect workers, prevent fines, and improve a company’s reputation.
Blast-resistant modular buildings are designed to help prevent devastating damage to people and property in the wake of an explosion. Ideally, these buildings are strong enough to withstand ground motion, surface bursts, and compression from shock waves without collapsing or creating any flying debris that could harm bystanders.
Blast proof doors are designed to resist explosive blasts and protect people and property from the damage from blast waves, including flying fragments, fire, and toxic fumes. Since we can’t entirely eliminate the threat of explosions on worksites, it’s crucial to ensure buildings and their windows, roofs, and doors can withstand blasts.