Welding and Cutting Torch Safety
Table of Contents
Summary: You can't earn a welding or cutting safety certification by reading a website. This site is for information only and does not certify or quality any persons in the use of oxy-acetylene or arc welding and cutting. For the proper use of any equipment, please contact the supplier or manufacturer of your equipment.
If handling an oxy-acetylene torch, know that if you do not follow safety guidelines, it is the same as handling an explosive. Oxygen in particular supports the burning process when combined with other gasses. When it comes in contact with oil or grease it is flammable and potentially explosive.
- Always make sure the torch and other equipment is in good repair.
- Stop welding or cutting if you sense something isn't working correctly.
- Have a first aid kit on hand and be prepared for injuries. Learn how to handle wounds and bleeding.
- Call 911 if injuries such as electric shock (do not touch person since you can become part of the circuit) or if they are suffering from gas inhalation move to clean air and then call for help.
- Beware of plume poisoning risk . This occurs when a work area isn't well ventilated or if you are not wearing a ventilator. Check the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) to see what type of equipment is required for the metal being welded and process being used.
For torches that use electricity, there is a risk of electric shock. Arc welding uses electricity referred to as AC or DC. A shock from an ordinary outlet is 120 volts which can cause injure or kill a person. Higher current can create more risk. AC is more hazardous than DC, although both can cause injury or death. AC is more likely to stop the heart.
Do not use any welding equipment until you have read and understand the manufacturers recommended safety instructions.