A welder must ensure that their welding activities do not pose fire hazards or injuries. But they also have to maintain personal protection and overall safety.
North Carolina saw 189 welding accidents in 2020 alone, some fatal. Hence, maintaining safety standards is imperative when using electric equipment like Lincoln electric equipment in Charlottesville, NC.
Here are five safety tips any welder, amateur and professional, can follow.
- Wear all of the safety equipment
When operating welding or electrical equipment, there is always the risk of burning yourself because the welding arc is quite hot. Hence, flame-resistant gloves are required to safeguard the wrists and hands from potential burns, wounds, or scratches.
You also need to wear an industrial-grade helmet or safety glasses. Safety glasses shield the eyes from hazardous particles. It should also include side shields to ensure no sparks can enter from the sides and cause damage to your eyes.
As for clothing, never weld in shorts or short-sleeved T-shirts. Wear flame-resistant clothes with fabric that is close–woven. Additionally, putting on a welding jacket enhances protection.
- Beware of electric shocks
Welders can be electrocuted by the active electrical circuits that form a puddle of molten metal. While an electric shock can result in severe injuries and fatalities, you may suffer more injuries by falling from a height because of the shock.
Welders are also vulnerable to secondary electric shock. This occurs when a person touches a portion of the welding circuit while also handling the metal being welded. Hence, welders should observe the following principles to avoid electric shock:
- When working near metal flooring or buildings, wear insulated clothing.
- Avoid working in damp conditions.
- Do not wear damp clothes.
- Work in a room with good ventilation
Welding can cause injury, but the chemicals found in welding gases and the base metal can also cause long-term, significant harm. This is because welding fumes contain chemicals like iron, manganese, and silicon – all of which can cause significant health concerns if inhaled in large amounts.
Always assess the welding area for ventilation as well as fume control. To determine ventilation, check whether or not you can breathe comfortably in the surroundings or see through the air particles.
Using natural ventilation, mechanical ventilation, or an exhaust hood, keeps gases and fumes out of the general area, enabling you to breathe better. If this is not an option, consider purchasing a respirator.
- Wear noise-protection equipment
Welders are likely to hear loud, prolonged noises as a result of procedures such as flame cutting and air arc gouging, which can generate hazardous noise levels of more than 100 decibels.
Prolonged exposure to such hazardous noise might result in hearing damage. Wear noise-canceling earplugs to protect your ears. Furthermore, to minimize extended exposure to this noise, take regular breaks from welding.
All construction procedures are ridden with safety hazards. However, working with welding equipment or Lincoln electric equipment in Charlottesville, NC can be far more hazardous than other procedures involved in construction.
Following the basic tips mentioned above, such as wearing appropriate safety gear, noise-canceling earplugs, maintaining good ventilation, and avoiding damp equipment and clothing, can help minimize safety issues. After all, following the most basic rules can often have the highest impact!