COMPRESSED AIR SAFETY

Compressed Air Safety Magazine

Compressed air and air hoses, when handled improperly, can be hazardous. Debris can become airborne. This is a common safety issue that you can take the right steps to avoid. We’ll discuss some common compressed air safety tips, but if you’re ever in doubt, contact the Pros at TCH Industries for assistance.

WHAT ARE THE SAFETY CONCERNS WHEN WORKING WITH COMPRESSED AIR?

Whatever you do, please don’t clean off your clothes–or yourself–using compressed air. We know it can be difficult to kick old habits but using an air compressor to remove debris from yourself or your clothes can be hazardous. Avoiding simple actions like these will keep you safe from air jet, dirt, and metal debris.

 Compressed air can come out of a hose extremely fast. Be aware of the high pressures you’re using and ensure you’re taking care to only apply pressure to the proper application. But it’s not just debris being dislodged; imagine all the shavings and metal chips lying over your workbench that can end up in your eyes or skin. Refrain from using compressed air to clean these shavings off of workspaces and machinery.

 On top of particles, compressed air itself can be dangerous. If compressed air enters through the bloodstream, it can cause an air bubble, which are known as air embolisms—trust us, you do not want to look up pictures, but if you did, you might reconsider taking compressed air safety a bit more seriously.

 Hose halters (or whip sock restraints) can help you safely maintain a handle on your hoses that are operating at higher pressures. In an event of hose failure, pressurized hoses can whip about with dangerous force and using these whip restraints will assist in keeping your workspace safe.

Metal Shavings

WHAT ARE THE 7 PNEUMATIC SAFETY RULES?

  1. Never direct airflow at yourself or another person.
  2. Never clean clothing or hair with your compressed air. As mentioned above, debris can be shot at high speeds, and using air for only the intended application will keep you and your team safe.
  3. Always know your pressure ratings and limits. If you ever find yourself in doubt with pressure requirements and ratings, contact the Pros at TCH Industries. 
  4. Check to make sure your equipment is not damaged, such as damaged hoses and pressure gauges. 
  5. Always wear proper protective equipment, including but not limited to safety glasses, hearing protection, and face masks.
  6. Always wear proper protective clothing, as normal work clothing will not protect against pressurized air.
  7. Never use a compressed air system to remove dust and debris from workspaces or equipment. If air for cleaning purposes is absolutely necessary, do not use compressed air for cleaning set above 30 psi.

WHAT KIND OF PPE IS REQUIRED WHEN WORKING WITH COMPRESSED AIR?

You don’t ever want to wish you had your personal protective equipment (PPE) after it’s too late. When dealing with equipment or machinery where any type of injury is more likely, including the use of compressed air, the following safety precautions are recommended:

  • Head protection: 
    • Protects from objects falling or flying overhead.
  • Hearing protection:
    • Protects from tools and machinery that may damage the ears.
  • Foot protection:
    • Protects against falling or rolling objects, sharp and heavy objects, slippery or uneven surfaces, hot surfaces, and electrical hazards.
  • Eye protection:
    • Protects against blowing dust or particles, metal shavings, acids and liquids, and welding light.
  • High-visibility vest:
    • Protects against vehicles and distracted drivers.
  • Hand protection:
    • Sharp or hot objects, highly pressurized air, chemicals, and electrical hazards.
PPE Gear

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