You are on page 1of 10

SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

08PR306C WELDING

Brierty Ltd ABN 65 095 459 448


72 Melville Parade South Perth WA 6151
Locked Bag 2001 South Perth WA 6951
Telephone (08) 9267 8000
Facsimile 1300 735 152
info@brierty.com.au
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

CONTENTS
1 Purpose ...................................................................................................................................................... 4
2 Responsibilities ........................................................................................................................................... 4
3 Definitions ................................................................................................................................................... 4
4 Procedure details........................................................................................................................................ 4
4.1 General .............................................................................................................................................. 4
4.2 Hazards.............................................................................................................................................. 4
4.3 Personal Protective Equipment ......................................................................................................... 4
4.4 Adequate Ventilation .......................................................................................................................... 5
4.4.1 Employer Responsibilities .............................................................................................................. 5
4.5 Prior to Carrying Out Work ................................................................................................................ 5
4.5.1 Supervision .................................................................................................................................... 5
4.5.2 Inspection of Site Conditions ......................................................................................................... 5
4.6 Welding Electrical Safety ................................................................................................................ 6
4.6.1 General .......................................................................................................................................... 6
4.6.2 Inspection and Maintenance .......................................................................................................... 6
4.7 Welding Burns, Fire & Explosion Prevention .................................................................................. 7
4.7.1 General Precautions ...................................................................................................................... 7
4.7.2 Containments ................................................................................................................................. 8
4.8 Safe Atmospheres ............................................................................................................................. 8
4.8.1 Cutting Drums ................................................................................................................................ 9
4.8.2 Flammable or Explosive Substances ............................................................................................ 9
4.8.3 Fumes and Gases ......................................................................................................................... 9
4.9 Final Inspection .................................................................................................................................. 9
4.10 Welding Lugs or Saddle Pieces ....................................................................................................... 10
4.11 Hot Work Equipment ........................................................................................................................ 10
4.11.1 Arc Cutting and Welding Equipment ........................................................................................ 10
4.11.2 Gas Cutting, Heating and Welding Equipment ........................................................................ 10
4.11.3 Flashback Arrestors. ................................................................................................................ 10
4.11.4 Lighting of Blowpipes ............................................................................................................... 10
4.11.5 Lighting and Extension Leads.................................................................................................. 10
4.11.6 Loading Wire Coils ................................................................................................................... 10

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 2 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

DOCUMENT CONTROL
Document ID Document Name Comment
08PR306C Welding

Date Version Description Originator Reviewer Approver


12/11/08 1 Safe Work Procedure S Hart S Hart T Abrahams
21/01/10 2 Safe Work Procedure Upgrade S Hart E Kelman S Hart
29/07/10 3 New Document Control Guidelines K Berridge S Hart S Hart
30/07/13 4 Added respiratory protection guidelines T Thompson B Bryan B Bryan
25/09/13 5 Updated flashback arrestor information T Thompson B Bryan B Bryan

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 3 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

1 PURPOSE
The purpose of this document is to provide a safe system of work where both employees and equipment are
protected from injury and damage whilst carrying out both gas and electric welding

2 RESPONSIBILITIES
Responsibility rests with the Project Manager or Manager of the site involved ensuring that all personnel
under taking the task of Welding are familiar with this Procedure

3 DEFINITIONS
Shall and should: The word shall is to be understood as mandatory. The word should as recommended.

Allied processes: include cutting, grinding, and gouging associated with welding.

Welding: means the joining of material by means of heat or pressure or both so that the material is united in
a homogenous mass.

Hot work: grinding, welding, thermal or oxygen cutting or heating and other related heat producing or spark
producing operations.

Hot work area: area within radius of 15m from point where hot work is undertaken, including space above
and below area.

4 PROCEDURE DETAILS
4.1 GENERAL
Welding techniques number over 80 different processes. Shielded Metal Arc Welding being by far the most
common, followed by Gas Metal Arc, Gas Tungsten Arc and Oxy - fuel welding. More than 50% of all
welding jobs are performed using Shielded Metal Arc Welding. All welding shall be carried out by qualified
personnel only. Welders should not work alone.

4.2 HAZARDS
Welding hazards include electric shock, burns, fire and explosions, radiation, heat, fumes & gases, noise and
numerous other physical hazards. Exposure to any of all of these can be minimised by using an effective
combination of control measures.

4.3 PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT


All personal protective clothing and equipment shall be in accordance with the relevant Australian standard
and in good condition.

Eye protection Facemask, goggles for oxy.


Overalls
Safety footwear
Leather apron
Helmet and grade of visor designed for the type of welding
Gloves
Hearing protection
Hand shields
Respiratory protection, e.g. P2 mask (if risk assessment deems it necessary)

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 4 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

4.4 ADEQUATE VENTILATION


4.4.1 Employer Responsibilities
To comply with legislative requirements, the employer shall ensure:

Means of extracting fumes generated by welding or allied processes are provided.


Means of ventilation are as close by as practicable to where welding or allied process is done.

4.5 PRIOR TO CARRYING OUT WORK


4.5.1 Supervision
All hot work shall be carried out under the control of an approved person who is responsible for the safe
execution of all operations. The approved person shall be consulted by personnel if unsure on any
issues.

The Supervisor must ensure relevant permits are gained e.g. hot work and confined space permits as
per site specific requirements.

Before hot work commences, this person shall ensure:

Hazards of location are identified.


Means of managing hazards are in place
Equipment is in safe, workable condition.
Equipment is located in the event of malfunction of equipment,
A fire or explosion hazard is not created.
There are no hazards relating to the item to be worked on.
All welding is done in accordance with AS 1674.

4.5.2 Inspection of Site Conditions


When carrying out welding and allied process work, a complete and thorough assessment of site
conditions shall be carried out. Site preparation work must include protecting the surfaces of other
materials from the possibility of damage or fire or the adoption of alternative methods to carry out the
work.

Identify and control any fire hazard within 15m from hot work
Consider any relevant hazards existing outside 15m.
Check tools for out of service and/or danger tags.
Ensure any electrical equipment has current testing tags applied and in good condition.
Properly ventilate the hot work area.
Suitable screens are provided to protect persons in the vicinity from harmful rays.
Ensure the work area has adequate lighting.
Locate the equipment, particularly fire fighting equipment.
Isolate area where hot work is to be performed.
Provide safe entry to and from hot work area.
Ensure any relevant permits are gained.
Ensure operators are wearing appropriate PPE.

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 5 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

4.6 WELDING ELECTRICAL SAFETY


4.6.1 General
Equipment must be serviced and installed by qualified, licensed electrician.
Do not tamper with electrical circuits or systems. The Welder is only responsible for making
connections in the welding circuit and for setting external welding machine controls.
Equipment must be well maintained and checked regularly, particularly insulation and connections
on work return leads and holders.
Work should be performed on dry, insulated floor where possible. Wooden platforms, rubber mats or
dry areas provide extra protection, particularly in confined spaces.

Electrodes or welding wire should never be touched with bare hands when in the holder or welding
gun. Holders or welding guns should never be held under the armpits. Hot work increases risk due
to the reduced skin resistance when sweating occurs.
Where practicable consideration should be given to the use of Welding Voltage Reducers that
maintain an output no greater than 12v until the arc is struck.
If connection to the power source is not by approved plug and socket, the power source shall be
connected to the supply by a licensed electrical contractor or electrician.
The electrode lead shall complete with AS1995 and should not exceed 9m without the consent of the
authorised person.
Flexible cables (work leads) must comply with AS 1995 and shall not be longer than the electrode
lead. The current capacity of the work lead conductor shall be not less than the electrode lead and
conductor.

4.6.2 Inspection and Maintenance


A licensed electrician shall carry out all inspections. Inspection of power sources, insulation resistance
test and earthing resistance test shall be carried out at the following intervals:

Transportable equipment at least once every three months.


Fixed equipment at least once every 12 months.
Relevant tags shall be applied and suitable record should be kept.

Personal safety precautions Electrical


When welding on machinery, disconnect the main electrical isolator and/or ECU computer before
connecting the power leads on the welder. Keep earth as close as possible to weld point.

Outer clothing should be non-flammable and gloves and safety footwear with insulating sole shoes
should be worn.
Electrical tools and portable electrical equipment that is operated at more than 32 V in an area
covered by a hot-work permit shall be protected by an earth-leakage device complying with AS 3190.
Avoid making contact between the electrode and the work with bare hands, arms or exposed parts of
the body.
Avoid wearing wet or damaged clothing, gloves or footwear
Check for faulty lead insulation.
Check for faulty insulation on the electrode holder or torch.

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 6 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

Use an insulating mat where possible


Power supply to the power source should be switched off prior to connecting or disconnecting the
output leads and when the power source is not in use.
Output lead should have clean contact surfaces, be properly made and adequately protected.
Insulation on output leads should be in good condition.
Electrode holder or torch should be checked for cracked or broken insulation and replaced if
necessary.
Make sure all cable connections are secure and in good condition.

All-insulated electrode holders and torches are necessary when working in confined spaces.

Wet conditions Avoid body contact between electrode or torch and wet surroundings should be
avoided. Drain excess water from work area before and during work.
Do not allow another person to hand you a metal object while holding the electrode.
Wear dry clothing next to skin and suitable protective outer clothing.

Footwear should be in good condition with rubber soles. Nailed leather soles are unsuitable.
Rubber boots or gumboots may be necessary.
If wearing a pacemaker, check with medical adviser to determine if hazard exists.

4.7 WELDING BURNS, FIRE & EXPLOSION PREVENTION


4.7.1 General Precautions
Flame cutting and welding operations are a major cause of industrial fires. The precautions necessary to
avoid such incidents depend largely upon the processes being used and the location of the work, and
include the following:

Welding should not be carried out underground. Refer to Supervisor for site specific regulations.
In a confined space, fixed fire extinguishing equipment should be isolated or removed as the
discharge can rapidly cause changes in the atmosphere. Suitable alternative and/or portable
extinguishers shall be made available.
Prevent burn hazards with proper PPE. Sparks and molten metal can fly and work - pieces can be
hot even though the glow has gone.
Prevent fire with welding blanket, by removing or covering flammable materials, and maintaining a
proper distance from flammable substances.
Prevent explosion by checking before welding or cutting that tanks and drums are free of substances
that are flammable or give off flammable substances.
Remove all combustible material or cover with safely secured non-flammable cover. Oily surfaces
and oil spills should be hosed down, and then sanded over. Trash, oily rags should be removed.
Properly mount cylinders and use correct cylinder regulators.
Ground contaminated by spilled flammable or combustible liquids should be covered with at least
50mm of clean sand.
Ensure gases, vapour or dust will not be carried by wind into hot work area from adjacent areas.
Ensure vehicular traffic is kept out of the hot work areas while work is in progress if possible.
Do not take flammable liquids including cleaning solvents into an area covered by hot work permit.

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 7 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

Use appropriate flash arresters and non - return valves on gas cutting and welding equipment.
Ensure threads and fittings to Oxygen supplies are clean and oil free.
Store Oxygen and fuel gases separately and at required distances.
Welding shall not be carried out near cleaning tanks containing chlorinated solvents - the heat
breaks down the vapours into very toxic gases.
Laser cutting requires protection from accidental eye contact with the beam or beam reflections.

Ensure gas equipment is well maintained and leak free.


Protect gas supply lines from hot metal and abrasion.
Ensure appropriate fire fighting equipment is maintained and readily available within 10 metres of
work area.
Ensure, before commencing, arrangements are made to prevent any off-cuts, hot metal, slag or
electrode stubs from lodging in places where there is the possibility of starting a fire.

Ensure that, when carried out adjacent or above timber, timber shall be protected (wetting or suitable
means) from direct heat and sparks, hot metal particles.

Natural or synthetic ropes should not be used for supporting scaffolding where hot work is being
carried out.

Prevent grass-fires and bushfires by clearing or wetting down the immediate area.
Protective guards shall be stable, ample size and arranged to prevent sparks, slag etc. from rolling
beneath them or penetrating openings. Guards shall be of fire-resistant material.
Contaminants shall be disposed of in manner approved by the relevant environmental authority.
Hot work on sprinkler applications shall be carried out in accordance with AS 2118.1. And shall be
carried out only after consideration has been given to the effect that hot work may have on system.

4.7.2 Containments
Isolate the hot work area using appropriate warning barriers.
Ensure vapour tight barriers are in place between equipment, piping, sewers, tanks etc. containing
hazardous materials and the hot work area.

Screens should also be used to protect other workers from arc welding or cutting flash.
Any pipe or tank in the hot work area that may be a hazard should be isolated by blanking off,
blinding, plugging or removing spool pieces and blanking off open ends.

Discharge from pressure relief, excess flow and overflow valves should be piped to discharge at a
safe area. It may be necessary to find other means of venting the adjacent lines to eliminate hazard
of the relief valve opening while hot work is in progress.
Valves, tappings and other equipment or facilities that may produce flammable or combustible
liquids, gases or vapours in or around the work area should be secured against accidental opening.

4.8 SAFE ATMOSPHERES


Ensure equipment that has held flammable or explosive substances is properly prepared before
commencing work.

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 8 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

Cleaning of equipment that has held dangerous goods should be carried out by person familiar with
characteristics of contents and proper cleaning method. All contaminants should be disposed in the
approved manner.
Ensure valve glands are checked to ensure they are not leaking flammable material. Pump, line and
vessel bleeders, sample points should be plugged off.
Tanks and lines adjacent to hot work should be properly vented to a safe area.

4.8.1 Cutting Drums


Cutting the top off any drum is dangerous. It is often unclear whats been in an empty drum and doing it
incorrectly can have explosive results. Do not use a drum as a platform. Do not apply heat to a drum if:

It has or may have contained or does contain a highly flammable liquid or gas

It has or may have contained or does contain a chemical

There is a hazard diamond on the label.


The drum is not labelled or if there is any uncertainty about the contents.
It has not been properly cleaned and approved by a specialist.

4.8.2 Flammable or Explosive Substances


Hazardous conditions flammable or explosive substances may be present under the following:

Container has or may have contained petroleum product or other type of volatile liquid that releases
flammable gases or vapours at atmospheric pressure.

Metal equipment that has contained an acid or alkaline material and hydrogen has been generated.
Equipment has deposits of sludge or scale or traces of resin, gum varnish, bitumen or similar or has
held a non-volatile oil or solid that may produce gases or vapours if exposed to heat.
Equipment has held a substance that is in finely divided state and has formed an explosive mixture
with air (coal, wheat dust)
Equipment has been coated internally and has filled with explosive vapours after being heated.

4.8.3 Fumes and Gases


During the welding process certain health and safety hazards may be present in the form of metal
fumes and gases.

Evidence suggests that welding is not a particularly hazardous occupation provided that the Welder is
appropriately protected. General ventilation, local point exhaust and personal respiratory protection all
serve to remove or reduce risk to the worker.

Decomposition products may also be hazardous to health. Solvents used to clean and degrease metal
before welding may release toxic gases or fumes when welding starts.

4.9 FINAL INSPECTION


After hot work has been completed, inspections shall be carried out to ensure that no smouldering materials
remain. Welds must be inspected to ensure appropriate standard. All condition of the Hot Work permit,
especially in reference to fire observation and spotting shall be followed.

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 9 OF 10
WELDING
SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PROCEDURE

4.10 WELDING LUGS OR SADDLE PIECES


A person who welds a lug or saddle piece to a steel structure or tank which supports or is to support a
scaffold must not leave the lug or saddle piece incompletely welded and must write his/her initials on the
structure immediately next to every completely welded item.

4.11 HOT WORK EQUIPMENT


4.11.1 Arc Cutting and Welding Equipment
When arc welding is suspended for a substantial period of time (e.g. lunch time, overnight) the power
source shall be turned off and electrodes removed from holders and holders placed so accidental
contact or arcing cannot occur.

Plasma act welding has open circuit voltages similar to those used in arc welding. Plasma arc cutting
type open circuit voltages range up to 710V DC and should be earthed as recommended by
manufacturers instructions. Plasma arc cutting equipment presents a greater hazard than arc welding
equipment due to higher voltages.

4.11.2 Gas Cutting, Heating and Welding Equipment


Shall be installed and used in accordance with recommendations of the manufacturer and at pressures
and manner to prevent flashback.

4.11.3 Flashback Arrestors.


Flashback arrestors shall be installed at both ends of the oxygen and acetylene hoses. These should be
replaced or inspected regularly (i.e. annually).

4.11.4 Lighting of Blowpipes


Suitable means (e.g. flint gun) shall be used for lighting of gas welding, cutting or heating blowpipes.
Rope wicks and other smouldering matter shall not be used.

4.11.5 Lighting and Extension Leads


Non-flameproof lighting, switches, plugs and sockets shall not be used unless hot work permit is issued.
Extension leads shall be heavy-duty sheathed flexible and not less than 1.5mm 2 or 30/0.25mm strands.

4.11.6 Loading Wire Coils


Be aware of the potential for wire ends to fly free when tension is released from coils. The wire can
spring free, resulting in personal injury. Always ensure personal protective clothing

DOCUMENT1 29-NOV-17 10 OF 10