Whether you’re a professional welder or someone interested in entering the industry, one of the most important things you’ll need to consider is PPE. Also known as Personal Protective Equipment, this consists of the equipment you’ll need to prevent injury and protect your body from health or safety risks at work. All legally compliant sites or environments will require these as standard, to protect themselves and ensure the health of every worker. So, it is helpful to understand what you will need to purchase. This blog post will explain just that.
What PPE does a welder need?
Let’s take a look at each of the items you’ll need and what they offer protection from.
Welding Helmet and goggles
Designed to protect both the eyes and face, these are vital equipment needs for every welder. They are designed to protect from a range of hazards from radiation through to flying debris, sparks and slag. In addition, tinted goggles can protect eyes from intense light, irritation and potential chemical burn too. In some situations, you may need to consider additional fire resistant head covering to be worn underneath helmets too.
Welders are subjected to high quantities of fumes and oxides from burning metals on a regular basis. This is where respirators come in. It is important to keep yours in the best quality through appropriate care which can be advised by the manufacturer. Some designs require filters that need to be replaced regularly to keep them effective in all environments.
Fire/Flame Resistant Clothing
As the name suggests, these are items of clothing used to protect the body from heat, fires, burns and radiation. Some key things to remember are that trousers should not have ankle cuffs and shirts should feature either flaps over pockets or be entirely taped closed.
Ear Muffs and Ear Plugs
Welding can produce loud noises, many of which could cause irreversible damage to your hearing. Ear plugs or muffs are the required option although it is important to remember that plugs won’t protect from sparks or splatter.
Boot & Gloves
Standard in more construction based environments, protective boots and gloves are vital. They can eliminate the risk of electric shock, burns or heat related injuries. Gloves should be insulated while boots should be rubber soled with steel toe caps.
Understand the right PPE for every job helps to protect you throughout your working career.