• Published: 4 Sep 2023

Paper shredder – explosion

Paper shredder explosion
Paper shredder explosion

Description of Incident

There was a small explosion in an office paper shredder. It happened after the blades were lubricated to ensure that the paper shredder cutting blades ran smoothly and to prevent paper jams after a period of intensive use. The method adopted, was to spray WD-40 silicone lubricant onto a sheet of paper, switch on the machine and immediately feed the lubricated sheet through shredder blades.

The heat generated during the shredding process or a spark from the internal motor ignited the WD-40 vapours, which had accumulated inside the shredder collection bin. This resulted in a small explosion. No-one was harmed; the paper shredder’s plastic bin was destroyed.

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