4 Sheet Metal Fabrication Safety Tips
Sheet metal fabrication is considered to be a very dangerous job, therefore you should be extremely careful, and follow all safety procedures, in order to avoid injuries, accidents and even fatalities, in some cases. This is because workers are frequently exposed to burns, cuts, falls and scrapes, when they are fabricating sheet metal. Apart from this, sheet metal workers have to bend down to lift heavy objects and in this way, they risk straining their muscles, necks and backs.
1 – Paying Attention
Sheet metal fabrication entails the use of large machines, therefore the most important thing is that sheet metal workers are cautious and concentrated on their work. The workers may need to push or pull metal slabs into a machine so you should not wear jewelry, or clothes which are loose, because they may get stuck and entangled in the machinery. Keep in mind that full attention is needed in every stage of sheet metal fabrication, because sheet metal becomes extremely hot and sharp during the process.
2 – Wearing Protective Clothing
Sheet metal workers are recommended to wear protective clothing, such as gloves, goggles and hard hats, at all times while working in the steel making environment. Goggles are particularly important, because debris and small metal shards can be emitted from the machinery, and hit the unprotected worker, which can possibly cause blindness.
It is also very important to wear a proper pair of safety shoes. Safety shoes will prevent any unexpected slipping or unsteadiness, which is very dangerous while handling hot metal and presses, amongst other types of equipment. Always wear the protective clothing, and do not leave it behind in a toolbox or in your vehicle.
3 – Avoiding Back and Neck Injuries
Keep in mind that the 2 most common injuries that workers suffer from, when fabricating sheet metal, are back and neck injuries. Remember that if a sheet metal worker gets seriously injured during work, he might be away from work for several months, until he will be well again.
It is also important for a sheet metal worker to learn how to lift heavy objects using his leg muscles rather than the back, neck and arm muscles. In this way, you avoid back strain or injury. It would be safer for sheet metal workers to have a machine which they could use specifically for lifting large and heavy pieces of sheet metal. Such devices are able to carry greater weight than your body, therefore you will not take health risks, if you use these lifting machines.
4 – Inspecting the Tools
Another viable safety precaution to take, is to check the tools (i.e. grinders and shears) for any signs of malfunctioning. Make sure that you keep them in a good working condition, so they do not get rusted or damaged. This is because sheet metal workers often have to operate manual and handheld tools. If a pair of shears is dull, you will find it very difficult to cut sheet metal with them, thus putting you and your co-workers in a great health risk.