This video is intended to introduce the basics of welding safety to beginners and those that may encounter welding at work or in the shop. If you're like me, you take for granted that everyone must know about avoiding the arcs and sparks - right? You might not believe this is true - but I've seen it firsthand in a weld shop. On one occasion, a new
employee was told to "watch the arc" when in the vicinity of welding. And they did. Of course, those of us that understand shop talk know that clearly means "do NOT look at the arc." That's just one example of how safety procedures can be misunderstood and guidance can be misleading to the newcomer.
Now think about this, that person filed a complaint because they were embarrassed and believed the welders were playing a joke that injured them. The result? You got it, enough rules and regulations to make welding a real drag. The person gave way too much credit to the welders, who had no idea the person would actually "watch the arc."
I take a practical approach when comes to safety - I know that you have to get the job done in a reasonable amount of time and with some efficiency. But, you should be able to do that safely. Also keep in mind that accidents happen and no amount of preparation can completely eliminate them. I've seen safety programs that went to extremes - to the point of banning everyday objects and accidents still happened.
Understanding this, don't take unnecessary risks. It's not cool to weld without a hood and if you don't use safety glasses for most shop activities, you need to get with the program and start now. I've seen lots of "tough-guy" welders
be humbled by an injury that was preventable. The goal of understanding safety is just that - avoid preventable accidents.
The key to understanding your risk is based on the size of the hazard zone. Each hazard has a different "reach" where they can be harmful. Beyond that zone, the effects are less of an issue. For example, the UV rays from the arc can travel much further than arcs and sparks can in some situations. That means, you might burn your eyes but you may not get sparks on your shoes. They key is to know the potential and using the right procedures and gear
to avoid issues.
videos: Info Sources & 5 Common Hazards
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The basics of welding safety are things everyone should know to protect themselves and others. This article outlines the best information sources, common hazards and outlines safety procedures and gear that can help you avoid them.
I hope you find this information helpful and practical. My goal is to provide the basics so everyone can avoid potential hazards.