Welding is an operation that allows two or more metallic and plastic elements to be connected; There are several types of welding, depending on the elements to be connected;
Whatever the process to be used, the welding activity carries several risks , so the professionals of this activity must be well aware of its main processes, in order to be able evaluate them correctly.
Workers who perform welding work are not a homogeneous group, that is, they work both in open and closed environments, but are well ventilated or very confined. Below we list some risks associated with this activity, but it is essential to carry out a risk analysis by type of welding and working environment.
5 main risks in welding
1.Exposure to fumes, gases and radiation particles (non-ionizing, infrared and ultraviolet)
Excessive exposure to fumes and welding gases can cause serious health problems, such as, respiratory diseases, cancer, among others. This can be controlled by following some safety precautions, namely:
- Ensure adequate ventilation to avoid fumes and gases in the work area.
- The welder must always wear the approved breathing mask unless exposure assessments are below applicable limits.
- Use a filter suitable for specific situations. Check the product description carefully.
During welding there are some risks that are present, such as, burns, damage to the eyes, cuts and crushed fingers. To avoid these risks, it is essential to use the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Appropriate PPE’s, such as a welding mask, goggles, to protect your eyes and head from hot projections.
Resistant clothing, welder’s gloves, aprons and boots can be used to protect against: fire electrocution and burns.
Bearing in mind that, with constant washing, fireproof treatments are becoming less effective.
The pants should not have folds down to prevent the storage of projections and should cover the top of the boots.
It is also fundamental to use protective curtains in the workplace.
To avoid noise damage, it is recommended to use hearing protectors and ear plugs.
The sudden discharge of electricity to the human body can cause serious injury. To minimize this risk, it is necessary to take into account some basic precautions, such as:
- Before starting any work, it is essential to inspect all cables, in order to guarantee the good condition of the equipment.
- Repairs to the welding equipment must only be carried out by specialized technicians.
5.Fire and explosion
The storage of flammable materials in the work area is a main cause of fires. In order to avoid this risk, it is necessary to keep the workplace clean before starting the activity, to know the location of alarms, extinguishers and emergency exits. Observe the following precautions:
- Keep a suitable Class ABC fire extinguisher nearby when welding.
- Make sure the extinguisher is loaded. If a fire extinguisher is not available, make sure you have access to fire hoses, buckets of sand or other equipment that will put out fire.
- Use of protective curtains.
- Stay in the work area for at least some time after finishing welding, to ensure that there are no latent fires.
Safety assured at Pipe Masters
One of Pipe Masters’ maxims is the safety of the entire team. To this end, the precautionary measures mentioned above are imposed in order to ensure that the conditions for working activities are met without any risk.
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