As a specific form of metal work, welding is crucial in various industries, from appliances and construction all the way to automotive and aviation, among others. Whether it’s putting pieces of kitchen appliances together, constructing gates and fences, or building up vehicles, no industry where metals are the basic materials can do without this essential fabrication process.
The hazardous metallurgy method it is, though, requires utmost care when applying it. This is true every step of the way, and regular PPE just won’t do. To be sure you have the proper safety taken care of, you need the adequate welding industrial safety equipment to rely on. In addition to being protected from the dangerous hot metal sparks, fumes, and radiation, having this equipment can also be of assistance with increasing your productivity, which is an additional reason to invest in quality items.
What Should a Welder Wear During Welding?
Safety is paramount when working as a welder and in industrial settings in general, and you must protect every part of your body that’s exposed to or in close contact with the metals. This is why you ought to take care by buying the big items as much as the small ones, from protective welding-appropriate clothing items to shoes, and accessories. If you plan on carrying out the process properly and safely, there’s not one more important piece than the other; you need to acquire them all. You know how the saying goes – better to be safe than sorry!
You may think you could do with your regular casual clothes, like a favourite tee, jacket, or pair of pants, but the fact welding safety industrial equipment is designed for the specifics of the metallurgy method means it’s fit to protect you from all the hazards this method could result in. From intense heat to flying sparks, adequate clothing in the form of safety long-sleeved shirts, kevlar-stitched jackets, and durable pants is a must-have.
In addition to being designed with all the right features to allow for the utmost protection from injury, it’s also designed for adjustability with the right amount of stretch. Moreover, the fabrics these pieces are made from ensure both protection and comfort, so you can expect to wear items that are breathable and cosy. This means your productivity won’t suffer because of discomfort or improper features. As a result, your weld products would meet the standards!
Much like clothing, the footwear you use around welding should be fit for this industrial process. So, your favourite pair of sneakers just won’t do when it comes to the higher level of protection safety equipment like a pair of rubber-soled safety boots is created to provide.
In addition to keeping you safe from flying sparks from heated metals, they keep sharp objects away, as much as offer the required grip in case you walk on a slippery surface. This type of footwear is just as comfortable as you can expect your sneakers to be, so you won’t have to fear discomfort if you’re on your feet for hours and hours.
For an extra dose of protection, you also need to equip yourself with the suitable personal protective equipment in the form of accessories. And, there’s something for every part of your body that you have to get as per the recommendations of Safety Work Australia:
Eyes, face, and head
If you want to minimise the risk to your health and well-being in general, there’s no way around it – you must get the suitable eyes, face, and head covering equipment. The properly designed safety goggles with side protection, and full welding helmet are the perfect dose of coverage for your delicate head and face areas as they shield you from heat and radiation (think: welding arc).
Meanwhile, they provide optimal view of the task you have at hand. If the helmet is breathable and has good ventilation but still makes you feel sweaty, then you should look for safety equipment suppliers that can offer you high-absorption sweat bands.
You wouldn’t exactly think of welding as a hazard for your hearing as much as your eye sight, for example, and it is if we consider the occupational noise decibel levels that often exceed the safe limits. So, don’t set yourself up for potential hearing issues, or worse, hearing loss, and pick the right earplugs or even earmuffs based on your personal preference and level of exposure. It’s notable to mention that the latter provide an extra layer of protection from welds where there are plenty of sparks or splatter expected that may even fly around your ears.
As you get to do this with your hands, these are body parts that are most at risk from burns and injuries, so don’t take the choice of proper gloves lightly. They should be made of high-quality materials that don’t only protect from sparks and heat but also sharp edges. It’s advisable to pick materials like top-notch leather for the benefits. Designs that are longer are recommended, as they also offer wrist and lower arm coverage.
Feet and legs
Per general rule, the welding footwear should be high-topped, but if you require the additional safety measure to keep you safe from flying sparks around your feet and legs, then buckle-fastening welder spats are other handy pieces you could enlarge your PPE collection with.
Sure, you got the adequate jacket and pants combo, but one can never be too safe when it comes to keeping painful and unpleasant burns at bay. Which is where the fire-resistant aprons prove to be of help. These are especially designed to offer thermal protection and they come in handy with preventing radiation as well.
Lastly, remember to take care of your breathing, as you won’t want fumes and oxides to turn into an issue. A proper breathing mask, a specialised respirator is simply a must.