1. Wear appropriate PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as welding helmets, gloves, respirators and protective clothing for all welding processes.
Welding helmets are designed to protect the eyes and face from sparks, spatter and ultraviolet radiation. The helmet should fit snugly with good side vision and a clear face shield or lens. Welders should be aware of proper ventilation requirements for the work area and use a respirator when appropriate. Protective clothing should be fire resistant and cover arms, legs and torso to protect from molten metal splashes.
2. Ensure adequate ventilation in the work area to control airborne particulates and gasses from welding operations.
The type of ventilation required depends on the process being used; it might involve mechanical exhaust systems, fans or fume extractors near the welding zone. Exhaust ducts must be connected correctly to prevent hazardous fumes from entering the breathing zone of welders. Make sure any filters are frequently changed or cleaned as needed.
3. Provide training for employees on safety procedures related to gas cylinders, torches and any other equipment used in the welding process.
Employees should be trained in the proper use of tools, materials and equipment related to welding. This includes knowing the different types of welding processes, the hazards associated with each and how to mitigate them. Training should also cover inspecting torch tips before loading a gas cylinder, lighting a torch safely, extinguishing it properly and safe handling of flammable gasses.
4. Inspect all equipment before use; check for frayed cables or exposed wires that could create electric shock hazards when using electricity-producing equipment like arc welders or plasma cutters.
Inspect all cables and wires for any damage such as fraying or exposed wiring that could cause an electric shock hazard when operating electricity-producing equipment like arc welders or plasma cutters. Ensure all machines are in good working order and that all safety guards are in place and functioning correctly.
5. Store combustible materials away from hot work areas to prevent fires due to sparks created during welding operations.
Store combustible materials such as rags, paper, wood and other flammables well away from hot work areas where sparks produced during welding could ignite them. Also ensure any fuel cylinders for arc welding or oxy-fuel cutting operations are located at least 20 feet away from hot work areas in a separate storage area with appropriate fire protection measures in place.
6. Use fire extinguishers rated "A B C" or larger when working with combustible metals such as magnesium which can spontaneously ignite at high temperatures near oxygen tanks/cylinders or acetylene torch systems.
It is important to have a fire extinguisher rated A B C or larger available at all times when working with combustible metals such as magnesium, which can spontaneously ignite in the presence of the welding arc. The proper use of fire extinguishers should be covered during employee safety training.
7. Make sure working surfaces are dry and free of debris that might cause slips, trips and falls while moving around the workplace.
It is important to keep the working surface dry and free of debris or obstructions that might cause slips, trips and falls. This includes keeping walkways clear and ensuring any cords are tucked out of the way. If welding outdoors, use mats or tarps to protect surfaces from molten metal splashing.
8. Securely store tools between shifts so they cannot be taken home by unauthorized individuals.
It is important to securely store tools between shifts so they cannot be taken home by unauthorized individuals. Consider using a locked cabinet or tool box, and make sure any hazardous materials are appropriately labeled and stored in designated areas.
9. Be aware of potential health effects of toxic fumes produced during certain types of flux core wire or manual metal arc (MMA) welding.
To keep welders safe, fume extraction and appropriate respiratory protection should always be used when working with flux core wire or manual metal arc (MMA) processes. Toxic fumes such as carbon dioxide and ozone are generated from these welding techniques; however, proper ventilation through mechanical systems can help reduce the risk of exposure to harmful substances.
10. Provide appropriate respiratory protection and ensure welders are aware of potential health effects of airborne contaminants and take necessary precautions to protect themselves.
Provide appropriate respiratory protection such as face masks and full-face shields to protect welders from airborne contaminants. Ensure that welders are aware of the potential health effects of these contaminants, and take necessary precautions to protect themselves. This can include wearing additional protective clothing and limiting their exposure time in areas with high levels of toxic fumes. Training should emphasize proper use and maintenance of all personal protective equipment.