Welding is a dangerous activity that can cause a number […]
Welding is a dangerous activity that can cause a number of injuries if the proper precautions are not taken. Knowing what to do and how to do it will make welding much safer. Most precautions are basically common sense for any activity in which you have an open flame.
PPE or personal protective equipment is the first step in maintaining welder safety. All welders need protective gloves, apron and shield. Shields vary and need to be rated for the type of welding that is being done. The shield protects the eyes from the ultraviolet light that is put off by welding equipment. This light can cause significant damage to the eyes. The shield also protects the face and hair from stray sparks. The gloves protect hands which would otherwise would be exposed to the stray sparks and the apron prevent sparks from burning the body or catching clothing on fire.
No one should operate a welder that has not had the proper training. The floor on which the welding is occurring must be either fireproof or have a fireproof mat on it. Welding areas should be cleared of any and all things that sparks could fall on and burn or catch on fire. No flammable liquids should be in the area. Things like gas containers or bottles of oil. People in the area need to be warned not to look at the welder without protective eye wear. Remove parts from the item to be welded that may catch fire or melt during the welding process.
Always keep a fully charged fire extinguisher handy. A fire blanket is a good idea too.
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