Always read the safety information and the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) supplied by the manufacturers of gases, materials and equipment used in welding operations. This information will recommend safe practices that will protect you from health hazards, such as fumes, gases and arc burns. Recommendations concerning ventilation and protective devices should be carefully followed.
To weld and cut safely, you must have a thorough knowledge of the welding process and equipment you will be using, and all of the hazards involved.
Keep your head out of the fumes. Do not breathe fumes and gases caused by the arc. Use enough ventilation. The type and amount of fumes and gases depend on the equipment and supplies used. Air samples can be used to find out what respiratory protection is needed.
Provide enough ventilation wherever welding and cutting are performed. Proper ventilation can protect the operator from the evolving fumes and gases. The degree and type of ventilation needed will depend on the specific welding and cutting operation. It varies with the size of the work area, on the number of operators, and on the types of materials to be welded or cut. Potentially hazardous materials may exist in certain fluxes, coatings, and filler metals. They can be released into the atmosphere during welding and cutting. In some cases, general natural draft ventilation may be adequate.
Other operations may require forced draft ventilation, local exhaust hoods or booths, or personal filter respirators or air-supplied masks. Welding inside tanks, boilers, or other confined spaces requires special procedures, such as the use of an air-supplied hood or hose mask.
Sample the welding atmosphere and check the ventilation system if workers develop unusual symptoms or complaints. Measurements may be needed to determine whether adequate ventilation is being provided. A qualified person, such as an industrial hygienist, should survey the welding operations and surrounding environment.
Do not weld on plate contaminated with unknown material. The fumes and gases which are formed could be hazardous to your health. Remove all paint and other coatings before welding.
More complete information on health protection and ventilation recommendations for general welding and cutting can be found in the American National Standard Z49.1, Safety in Welding and Cutting. This document is available from the American Welding Society, 550 N.W. LeJeune Road, Miami, FL 33126.
Do not touch live electrical parts. To avoid electric shock, follow the recommended practices listed below. Faulty installation, improper grounding, and incorrect operation and maintenance of electrical equipment can be sources of danger.
Warning – Arc rays and spatter can injure eyes and burn skin. Wear correct eye, ear and body protection.
Electric arc radiation can burn eyes and skin the same way as strong sunlight. Electric arcs emit both ultraviolet and infrared rays. Operators, and particularly those people susceptible to sunburn , may receive eye and skin burns after brief exposure to arc rays. Reddening of the skin by ultraviolet rays becomes apparent seven or eight hours later. Long exposures may cause a severe skin burn. Eyes may be severely burned by both ultraviolet and infrared rays. Hot welding spatter can cause painful skin burns and permanent eye damage.
Be sure you are fully protected from arc radiation and spatter. Cover all skin surfaces and wear appropriate eye and face protection from arc burns and burns from sparks or spatter.
|Lens Shade Number*
|MIG (Gas Metal and Flux Cored Arc)
|60 to 160 amps
|160 to 250 amps
|250 to 500 amps