Safety Tips for Working on Metal Welder
When it comes to joining metal products, there’s no better alternative than welding. This fabrication process is used in almost every industry. Today, the machines that put metal pieces together use advanced technologies. Those who work on them should have particular knowledge and experience.
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But, regardless of the years of experience and skills involved in this job, welders can suffer many injuries. They are at risk of trauma at their workplace if they don’t adhere to standard safety procedures and requirements.
Since the danger for welders is lurking on several sides, it requires the universal approach to the issue of occupational safety. Due to the specific nature of the welders’ job and the risks to which they are exposed, providing a safe workplace is a priority.
Persons using the welding machine must wear special protective equipment. This gear is adapted to the working conditions. As you know, melting metal can expose you to many risks, such as burns, physical injury, IC and UV radiation, etc.
The authority responsible for occupational safety prescribes workplace safety norms. They commit workers to wear specialized fire-resistant clothing and reinforced work boots. Welders usually put on protective coats or aprons, depending on whether they work indoors or out.
Safety gloves and goggles are something you should always wear when working on the welding machine. And if you work in a noisy place, wearing earplugs is a must. It may seem like too much stuff, but rest assured that everything is there with a reason.
The protective clothes prevent potential burns that can result from sparks or touching the hot metal welder. The gloves also help to withstand the heat when working. In case you don’t have a helmet, goggles are especially important. Apart from burns, they protect the eyes and face from glare and radiation.
Welding Helmet as Essential Part of Safety Equipment
The level of radiation emitted during the melting of metals is not negligible. It is known what impact overexposure to UV and infrared rays have on the skin. The most severe consequence of unprotected welding without facial protection is skin cancer. Because the skin on the face is delicate and very thin, it is directly affected by the harmful particles.
Another problem that can occur due to not wearing a protective helmet is the sensitivity to light. In addition to disabling you at work, this visual impairment can also interfere with your daily activities (while driving, looking at your phone screen, etc.).
Although there are many different types of head equipment for welders, as seen here, all have the same purpose. Wearing protective helmets prevent harmful rays from reaching the welder’s eyes and face and endanger the health.
Employers Must Provide Safe Workplace
As important as it is for the worker to be protected, the same goes for working space. As operating a metal welder is a job of high responsibility, working in a safe place is a must. And if anything is different, that directly endangers employees but also affect a company’s reputation.
The welding machine uses heat and gas to run. For that reason, in a working area shouldn’t be any flammable liquids and gases, as well as materials such as paper or styrofoam. Just in case, keep a fire extinguisher close.
Certain substances used for cleaning and degreasing are a potential danger if found near a welding machine. For example, brake-cleaning agents convert to toxic gases when exposed to UV radiation. These fumes can lead to life-threatening poisoning. Although ventilation is a significant part of every production facility, it cannot protect you in this case.
It’s also important for employees to be able to get assistance should an emergency arise. Ensuring that welders have a communication device (e.g mobile) is important. However, it may be useful to use lone worker devices, which have inbuilt features like man down functionality and SOS buttons that allow them to either quickly get help or automatically (falls from height, trips and slips etc).
One more thing to consider is moisture. Poor construction of the building can lead to leakage and the appearance of water puddles near the welding machine. Most modern appliances are electrically operated, as explained on https://weldingmachinereviews.com/. There is a real risk of electric shock, so most manufacturers upgraded their metal welders with an extra feature – grounding.
Welding is a responsible job, so employers must provide welders with optimal working hours. Only that way, these workers can follow all safety procedures and be productive at the same time. That’s why they should not work for more than 4 hours in a row. The number of working hours per day should not be more than 8.
Prolonged work is a significant effort, as welders sometimes stand by or bend over the machine for hours. They must have a high level of concentration, which is not possible when they are tired, both mentally and physically.
People working in hazardous conditions should adhere to particular rules. For them, using personal protective equipment is a necessity. For employers, buying protective gear is no luxury, but an investment that pays off. A safe worker is a satisfied worker.