Oxy-Fuel Welding and Cutting Safe System of Work


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Product Description


  1. Each operator is responsible for ensuring that the welding and cutting equipment is only operated in a safe condition and in a safe manner and that he/she has been duly authorised and trained in the safe operation of the equipment.


  1. It is the duty of each operator to immediately report any changes occurring on the welding or cutting equipment which may affect its operation.


  1. The cleanliness and tidiness of the welding or cutting equipment and its surrounding area must be ensured through appropriate instructions, routine inspections and cleaning.
  2. Work on or alteration of this equipment, which detrimentally affects the safety of the machine in any way, is prohibited.


  1. Prior to beginning welding or cutting operations, workers must check that the cylinders, regulators, backflow prevention device, flame arrestors, hoses, clamps, and torches are in good working condition.


  1. Oil or grease must not come into contact with oxygen cylinders, valves, regulators or other fittings. Do not handle oxygen cylinders or apparatus with oily hands or gloves, or greasy materials. Do not let oxygen contact oily or greasy surfaces or clothes, or enter a fuel oil or other storage tank.


  1. Fuel gas and oxidizers must pass through a pressure-reducing regulator prior to being used. Pressure reducing regulators must only be used at or below the rated pressures and must be specific to the type of gas being used. Prior to connecting a pressure regulator, cylinder valves should be “cracked” to clear the dust or dirt that might otherwise enter the regulator. This procedure shall be performed away from other welding work or sparks.


  1. Prior to removing a regulator from a cylinder, personnel must close all cylinder valves, and release the gas from the regulator.


  1. Personnel must follow the manufacturer’s operating procedures for lighting the torch. Generally accepted practices for start-up and shut down follow:


  1. Machine parts or components, which form part of the safety protection, must not be removed, dismantled, altered, put out of operation or moved.


  1. All safety devices must be checked at regular intervals for perfect operation.


  1. The operator must have thorough knowledge of the controls and their function before attempting any operation.


  1. Never leave the welding or cutting equipment unattended when running.


  1. Ventilation: Cutting or welding operations must be performed in areas with adequate ventilation to keep fumes and gases within safe limits.


  1. Local exhaust ventilation must be used when potentially hazardous materials are being worked on. (Examples of potentially hazardous materials include, but are not limited to, chromium, fluorides, zinc, beryllium, cadmium, lead, and mercury).


  1. Adequate exhaust ventilation must be used when using inert-gas welding, plasma-arc cutting or carbon-arc cutting.

The metal surface shall be free of all chlorinated solvents during any welding or cutting operations.


Note: Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) at all times!

It is important for all employers to have a health and safety policy in place and for those companies who employ more than 5 employees, it is a legal requirement. Make sure that you have the correct health and safety documents in the workplace and that they are not out of date.

The Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974 is the legislation dealing with health & safety in the workplace and is usually governed by local authorities who make the necessary checks and visits to companies to ensure that the rules and regulations of the act are complied with.

A health & safety policy should be written by someone in your place of work, preferably by someone who has taken a course in health and safety and is aware of the responsibilities. The templates you can download will help you to create a policy which is clear and easily understood by the work force.

A health & safety document usually comprises of three elements which are:

  • A statement outlining how safety procedures will be managed in the workplace.
  • How safety is to managed and who is responsible for safety procedures
  • How health & safety activities are managed.
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