Sawmills » Dry Kilns and Facilities

This section includes safety requirements for Dry Kilns and Facilities within sawmill operations. Click on the following areas for further explanation:

Dry kiln


Workers may be struck by lumber due to failure in the dry kiln foundation.

  • Dry kilns shall be constructed upon solid foundations to prevent tracks from sagging. 1910.265(f)(1)


Workers may be struck by lumber due to inadequate clearance on the sides of kilns.

Lumber piles loaded in dry kiln
  • A passageway needs to be provided with adequate clearance on one side or in the center of end-piled kilns, and on two sides of cross-piled kilns. 1910.265(f)(2)


Closed kiln doors

Workers may be struck or crushed by kiln doors.

  • Mechanism at top of kiln doors to prevent toppling in case doors run off travel rails.

    Main kiln doors need to be held open while kiln is being loaded. 1910.265(f)(3)(i)(a)

  • To prevent toppling, firmly secure main doors when they are disengaged from carriers and hangers. 1910.265(f)(3)(i)(c)

  • Escape doors must be of adequate height and width to accommodate an average size man. 1910.265(f)(3)(ii)(b)

  • Kilns must have escape doors that operate easily from the inside, swing in the direction of exit, and are located in or near the main door at the end of the passageway. 1910.265(f)(3)(ii)(a)

  • Counterweights on vertical lift doors must be boxed or guarded. 1910.265(f)(3)(i)(b)


Pits that are poorly ventilated or do not provide adequate space may have adverse health effects on workers.

  • Pits need to be well ventilated, drained, and lighted. Pits must also be large enough to safely accommodate the kiln operator and all operating devices. 1910.265(f)(4)


Contact with high-pressure steam mains may burn workers.

  • High-pressure steam mains must be covered with heat-insulating material. 1910.265(f)(5)


Employees may fall if safe access to the roof is not provided.

  • Provide a fixed ladder to permit access to the roof. If controls and machinery are mounted on the roof, a permanent stairway and standard handrail need to be installed. 1910.265(f)(6)


Workers may be struck by logs or loads that are moved unintentionally.


Exposure to cold temperatures after leaving a hot kiln can be hazardous to workers.

Steam heated dry kiln
  • During cold weather, a warm room needs to be provided for kiln employees after they leave a hot kiln. 1910.265(f)(8)