Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Steam, Boiling Liquids, and Hot Surfaces


Thermal burns are the second-most frequent injury in craft breweries and distilleries. Workers typically burn themselves through contact with substances, such as steam, hot wort, or hot water, or by touching hot metal surfaces, such as tanks, steam pipes, or process lines during product transfer or cleaning-in-place (CIP). 

Risk Control

Reduce or minimize the risk of injury by following these guidelines:

  • Use personal protective equipment and clothing, such as long cotton pants, long-sleeved shirts, temperature-resistant gloves, rubber aprons, and face shields. Providing workers with long-sleeved shirts that have your company’s brand helps encourage the use of appropriate protective clothing.
  • Ensure hoses containing steam and hot liquids have appropriate fittings and are securely tightened. Never blow steam through a hose that isn’t properly secured at both ends.
  • Don’t open steam pipes without first locking out and purging the water and steam from the boiler. Boilers can release scalding water or steam that’s barely visible but can Identify areas where hot substances could spill, and keep out of the splash zone.
  • Install boil-over protection & Guard systems in the brew kettle, if possible. Keep a water hose nearby to calm an overexcited boil. If possible, add antifoaming agents, such as a sufficient quantity of hops, to prevent overflow while boiling.
  • Consider adding insulation around hot surfaces. Removable and washable insulation blankets are available that are both food grade and chemical resistant.

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