The Flammable and Explosive Dangers of Distilling
The Clients Request
A highly reputable Gin distiller in Scotland, leading the way in the booming botanicals industry, approached us to assist them with assessing the risks of fire and explosions within their operations to ensure the safety of their work environment.
Both gin and vodka are made in a similar fashion, with highly concentrated ethanol as the common choice of base spirit, which is subsequently a very flammable substance often associated with the production of commercial and retail alcoholic beverages.
With the gin distillation process generating a potentially hazardous atmosphere, a compliance assessment of the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 (DSEAR) Survey and a Hazardous Area Classification report was required.
There were a number of challenges associated with this project. The build of the facility was complex due to the vast array of stills, tanks, pipework and valves required for the distillation process and the various electrical & non-electrical equipment that is required to control the process. Each piece of equipment needed to be positioned in the optimal location to ensure maximum production and efficiency of this unique distillation process.
There was ongoing construction and renovation on site, resulting in the majority of equipment moving to different locations and therefore rendering the current hazardous area classifications and DSEAR assessments out of date.
Our inspection team worked alongside the client to identify where the new equipment would be best located for production and also to ensure separation from the remainder of the distillery operations so as to minimise the risk of a potential explosion.
This forward planning simplified completion and update of the DSEAR risk assessment and the hazardous area classification drawings. A full documentation pack, including up-to-date risk assessments, reports and drawings, was produced by EPIT for the client to hold on site for maintaining and referencing, whenever necessary.
EPIT guided the client through every step of the journey, which can often feel overwhelming and complex to those who have not navigated the steps before. The client was delighted to have compliance with DSEAR, but more importantly, was comfortable in the knowledge that their employees and customers would be safe at their Scottish distillery.