Welding is a dangerous activity that requires special safety precautions. Have you ever wondered what basic personal protective equipment welders need?
Welders face a variety of potential hazards including electric shock, metal splashing, and gas or vapours that can be harmful to their health. Working in the welding field can put workers at risk of diverse injuries such as burns, cuts and eye damage. While the hazards associated with welding mean it has a high risk of injury, proper use of personal protection equipment (PPE) can reduce the likelihood of said injuries significantly.
It is essential for welders to understand where and when to use PPE so as to ensure their safety. In this article, we will discuss some of the most important pieces of protective gear needed for welding; providing you with an understanding of the basics so that you can stay safe while at work.
The most important piece of PPE for welders is a welding helmet. A welding helmet is designed to protect the faces and eyes from sparks, spatter, and harmful radiation. It should be made of a fire-resistant material such as leather or plastic and have an adjustable headband for comfort. The lens should also be rated to filter out ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR ) radiation. Popular brands of welding helmets include Unimig, 3M, Cigweld, and ESAB. Read this blog for more details about the protection welding helmets provide.
Australian Standards (AS/NZS 1337.1:2010) require that welding helmets must be worn when welding, cutting or brazing.
Other pieces of PPE include safety glasses, face shields, and respirators. Safety glasses are designed to protect the eyes from sparks while face shields provide additional protection from flying debris. Respirators are used to protect the lungs from fumes and gases generated during the welding process.
Welders should also wear PPE clothing such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, and safety boots. This will help protect them from damage that may come in contact with their skin. Additionally, they should wear a surgical mask to prevent inhalation of any fumes or gases that may be present. Learn more about coveralls and fireproof jackets here.
In conclusion, welders should always wear the appropriate PPE when welding. This includes a welding helmet, safety glasses, face shields, respirators, protective clothing and safety boots. Additionally, they should be aware of any control measures that may be in place to reduce the risk of injury or illness. By following these guidelines and taking the necessary precautions, welders can ensure their safety while working.
Why is it important to evaluate Personal Protective Equipment?
It is established that safety equipment plays an important role in welding that why it is important to evaluate the PPE used for welding on a regular basis. This is because the protective equipment can become worn or damaged over time, making it less effective at protecting welders from potential hazards. Additionally, new safety standards may be introduced that require different types of PPE to be used. By regularly evaluating the PPE used for welding, welders can ensure that they are using the most up-to-date and effective equipment available.
What risks and hazards are associated with welding?
Welding can be very hazardous, these include electric shock, metal splashing, and exposure to harmful gases or vapours. Electric shock can occur when welders come into contact with live electrical wires or equipment, while metal splashing can occur when molten metal is thrown from the welding arc. Exposure to harmful gases and vapours can occur when welding in enclosed areas without proper ventilation. It is important for welders to be aware of these risks and take the necessary precautions to protect themselves.
What are the Safety Guidelines for Welders?
Welders should always follow safety guidelines when working. These include wearing the appropriate PPE, maintaining a safe distance from the welding arc, and ensuring that the work area is well-ventilated. Welders should also ensure that their protective equipment is in good condition and that they are aware of any potential hazards in the work area. Additionally, they should never weld without proper instruction or supervision and take regular breaks to reduce fatigue.
Standards and compliance for Personal Protective Equipment
It is important for welders to ensure that their PPE meets the relevant Australian standards and is compliant with occupational safety and health regulations. The Australian Standard AS/NZS 1337.1:2010 specifies requirements for eye and face protection, while AS/NZS 1715:2009 outlines the requirements for respiratory protective equipment, which you can learn more about here. Welders should also be aware of any additional control measures including risk assessment that may be in place to reduce the risk of injury or illness.
Code of practice
Welders should also be aware of any relevant codes of practice that may be in place. A code of practice is a set of guidelines that outlines the safe and proper way to perform welding tasks. It can include information on the types of PPE to use, control measures to reduce risks, and safety procedures for working with hazardous materials. By knowing and following the code of practice, welders can ensure that they are working healthily and safely and in compliance with safety regulations.