According to ENR New York, there were 140,000 renovation and construction permits reviewed for New York City in 2014. The Department of Buildings expects that number to rise in 2015 and 2016. With the increase in construction permits comes the increase in welding jobs. From putting together a building’s new steel skeleton to constructing a bridge, welders will be hard at work and that can create welding injuries.
There are plenty of safety concerns when it comes to construction accidents, but those concerns get a bit more magnified when welding is involved. Working with compressed gas and flames, often in a enclosed area, can lead to welding injuries. But when companies understand how to recognize the situations that cause welding accidents, then they can do more to prevent them.
Dangers Of Welding Conductive Materials
According to Lincoln Electric, welders often find themselves working among material that conducts electricity very well. The metals and bare wires welders work with can become conduits for electrical currents, and that puts the welder right in the middle of the danger.
On welding jobs, attention needs to be paid to the electrical equipment being used in relation to where welding is going on. Companies need to respect the dangers that come with putting welders in between conductive materials.
Explosions Caused By Gases
As we mentioned earlier, the open flames and gases welders work with are often unstable and dangerous. In July 2015, a welder in Dayton, Minnesota was killed when the gas he was using ignited and exploded. The explosion destroyed his welding shop, and killed the worker instantly.
Construction companies should only hire experienced welders who respect and understand the gases and materials they will be using. The sparks and open flames created while welding can set off the many gases being used, and the results can be welding injuries that could be quite severe.
Lack Of Protective Equipment
One of the situations that construction companies can control when it comes to preventing construction accidents on welding jobs is how much protective equipment and clothing their workers wear while on the job. One of the most common reasons for welding accidents is a lack of protective gear that leaves the skin and parts of the body exposed to the welding materials and flames.
Each construction company should have clearly defined policies on what welders need to wear on the jobsite, and those policies should be strictly enforced by company inspectors. If it is discovered that a welding injury could have been prevented through company training and enforcement, then the company could bear some of the blame for the resulting injuries.
Increase In Welding Activity Calls For Vigilance
With the increase in New York City building permits comes an increase in welding activity. Welding is the process of
using gases to produce a flame that binds components using heat. There are several different ways in which welding workers can be injured, but those injuries do not need to happen if the company and workers unite to take he right steps.
By creating good welding policies and having the proper safety gear onsite, the company can ensure that workers have the tools they need to do their jobs safely. By insisting on doing regular training sessions with workers, the company can also make sure that workers understand the dangers of their jobs, and respect the need to stay as safe as possible at all times.