Safety during protective coating is needed to check all the possible chances of accidents for preventing loss of life and permanent disability of an employee, any damage to assets and material. It is needed to eliminate accidents causing work stoppage and production loss.
In every industrial environment, the safety factor is an important consideration. In some environments, it is of overriding importance. Some of the safety factors that need to be considered in coating application are as follows.
Safety while Surface Preparation
Workers using abrasive blasting equipment should be furnished with good equipment in proper working order. They should be equipped with air-filter masks to prevent their breathing dust and scale. Clothing should be adequate and safe. Safety shoes should be worn. Necessary goggles or safety glasses should be mandatory. Ear plugs or protective ear coverings should be worn.
Some materials, particularly older coatings that are to be removed for the recoating of structures, are considered hazardous and require special safety procedures. This includes lead-based paints. These materials, often including the blast media, may not be left on site after removal. Requires proper disposal of these removed materials.
Coating materials are frequently flammable, explosive, or poisonous, and sometimes all three.
- Coatings incorporating flammable should not be used in the vicinity of open flames, sparks, or electrical equipment. Every precaution should be taken to prevent accidental fire or explosion by prohibiting smoking, requiring the use of non-sparking tools.
- When used in enclosed places, solvent concentrations should be kept both below the explosive limit and below the acceptable toxicity level. Both limits vary among materials, so safety rules should be a function of materials used. Ventilation of enclosed places should be continuous during the operation and for three hours afterward when coatings are used. Safety-approved electrical equipment is mandatory.
- Solvent vapors should be removed from tanks by suction because many vapours are heavier than air. Thus, the remotest and lowest ends of tanks should receive special attention. Workers should wear approved compressed-air masks. Shoes should have rubber soles and heels and no exposed steel nails.
Whenever ventilation is a factor, it should be planned carefully and checked frequently. When necessary, automatic equipment should be used to make constant checks of air for poisons or explosive concentrations. All riggings, lifts, platforms, hoses, or any other equipment used on the job should be inspected and maintained in safe order. Rigging should be done by experienced operators.
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