Hard Hats On Welding Flash Burns and Other Welding Hazard Safety Precautions
Last updated ago
4 min read
By 
Welding Buddy Experts
Published 
June 23, 2022

Hard Hats On Welding Flash Burns and Other Welding Hazard Safety Precautions

Last updated ago
4 min read
By 
Welding Buddy Experts
Published 
June 23, 2022

Welding is a dangerous occupation. UV exposure, flash burns, and lung pain are just some of the most common injuries sustained in welding. Some of these injuries are minor, but others can be life-threatening. But there are safety precautions and practices you can implement every time you are welding to keep yourself protected. 

In this blog post, we’ll learn more about the different welding hazards you could encounter and some safety precautions you should take note of. These precautions and safety tips are simple but can effectively prevent accidents from happening in the workplace. 

Welding Hazards and Their Preventive Measures 

Welding hazards are an inevitable part of the welding process. These hazards include, but are not limited to, welding flash burns, smoke inhalation, metal fumes, and UV radiation exposure. That’s why knowing the essential safety precautions is a must for every welder. Let’s look at the different welding hazards and simple tips for workplace safety. 

Welding Electrical Hazards 

Welding electricians work with high-voltage equipment and are susceptible to electrical shock if they come into contact with energized wires or terminals. Moreover, most welding arc processes use a huge amount of electricity to run. That's why electric shocks and other hazards are more dangerous and even fatal during welding. 

It’s also important to note that you are most vulnerable to electric hazards when your workstation is damp, when metal structures surround you, and when you work in tight and cramped spaces where you are laying down or kneeling. But here are some safety practices you can do to keep you safe from electrical shocks during welding. 

  • Practice maintaining a safe distance when working with electrical currents. According to general safety standards, non-professionals should not work with currents greater than 50 volts. Moreover, ensure no live wires are scattered in your workplace before beginning your operation. 
  • Always check the cords of your equipment. Make sure they are not overstretched to prevent tears. Avoid hanging metal equipment on your cords or fastening them with a staple to avoid electric shocks. 
  • Install a shield or barrier that can be used when dealing with high-voltage tools and materials. Make sure to use insulating materials as your shield for optimum protection. Furthermore, always unplug your welding equipment after using them. 
protective welding essentials

Welding Noise Hazards 

During the welding process, you are susceptible to loud noises. Welding equipment can produce up to 85 dB, which is considered loud noise. Moreover, sounds from other equipment like cutting torches, plasma and arc gouge can go over 100 dB. Prolonged exposure to loud noises can cause hearing problems that can develop into permanent hearing loss. 

Loud noises can also trigger ringing of the ears and vertigo. In other cases, this may cause increased heart rate and high blood pressure. Here are some safety tips for practicing when you are working with loud noises. 

  • Use ear muffs or ear plugs that pass safety standards. Don't just plug anything in your ears that can damage your ear canals and ear drums. There are industrial ear protection gear compatible with welding. 
  • Don’t drown your equipment's noise with loud music from your headphones. It will just cause more damage, especially when working for longer periods. Instead, strap on noise-cancelling headphones to lessen the noise from your equipment. 
  • If you have hearing sensitivity and you’ll be working with loud noises, avoid drinking caffeine and lessening your sugar intake to keep your heart rate and blood pressure at a normal level. 

Exposure to Gases and Toxic Fumes

During the welding process, welders are usually exposed to gases used for welding. These fumes can be dangerous and painful when inhaled. Gases commonly used in welding are nickel oxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and chromium. These gases can harm one's respiratory system when they enter your body in large quantities. 

These toxic fumes can lead to illnesses like pneumonia, situational asthma, throat and lung irritation and in severe cases, lung cancer. But with the preventive measures and correct safety equipment, you can prevent any form of respiratory damage. 

  • Use personal protection equipment that the OSHA recommends. Furthermore, use a protection suite with a built-in respirator to help protect your lungs. Make sure that your respirator has a customized fit. 
  • You can substitute some welding materials with safer choices. Some welding processes don't have as much gas as other processes. You may want to consider working with them. 
  • Make it a habit to position your head away from the fumes. It will also be helpful to install proper ventilation in your workplace and exhaust fans to clear out contaminated air.
used welding gloves and helmet

Welding Burn Hazards 

Welding burns are some of the most severe and painful injuries a welder can suffer. Welding flash burn is caused by exposure to the bright light produced during welding. The UV light from the weld can cause severe burns to the eyes and skin. If these burns are unattended, they can lead to permanent eye damage and persistent infections. Here are some practices to help you navigate through welder’s flash and skin burns.

  • To avoid flash burns, it's best to invest in an auto-darkening welding helmet. These are the best protection you get for your eyes. In addition, these welding helmets can automatically adjust their settings to keep your eyes protected. 
  • We don't recommend welding flash burn home treatments. Don't wait for your pain to subside because the longer you wait, the more damage it can do. Always rush to your eye doctor in case of accidents. 
  • For skin burns, always make sure to wear the proper welding protection. Some essential protection gear are boots, gloves, and fire-proof welding jackets. 
  • Clear your workstation from anything flammable. If possible, have separate storage for flammable materials. Furthermore, always have a first aid kit in your workstation and extinguishers in case of emergencies. 

Conclusion 

Welding flash burns and other related hazards are a part of welding. If you're not trained with the proper safety measures, you are vulnerable to accidents which can cause permanent damage. Since welding is hazardous, safety gear and good practices are essential for every welder. We hope this overview of the different welding hazards and preventive measures helps you work safely. 

If you need anything about welding, like information on tools, safety gear, welding accessories, step-by-step welding flash burn treatment, and in-depth equipment reviews, don't forget to subscribe to our blogs.

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