Welding requires a high degree of skill, experience and safety to complete. High heat, heavy objects and lots of electricity for powering an arc welder or similar welding tool will put a worker at risk of various dangers while welding. Skilled welders are highly adept at working safely, but accidents still happen. When they do, workers’ comp claims may arise.
Electrocution is the greatest risk
When using arc, MIG or TIG welding equipment, welders are using potentially lethal amounts of electricity to heat and add metal to create a weld. The electrical circuit that creates the power and heat needed to weld flows through the welding equipment and the metal being welded. Equipment must be in its best shape, and the welder must be fully trained and qualified to do the job safely. Whenever equipment is substandard or someone less than qualified attempts to weld and injury results, workers’ compensation issues could arise.
Many other dangers require proper protection
Electricity is a welder’s greatest danger, but it is not the only one. Many welders suffer burn injuries, blunt force trauma from falling objects, the potential inhalation of gases or fumes, and possible fire or explosion dangers. Worst-case scenarios cause death while others can leave a welder maimed or disabled for life.
Personal protection equipment is critical
Welders must use specially designed and built personal safety equipment to protect against the many potential dangers of welding with electricity or gas. Eye protection that prevents damage to eyes from the intensely bright light and flying slag preserves sight. A welding helmet with an eye shield is a must when using an arc, MIG or TIG welder. Welders also need leather protection for the chest and legs as well as leather gloves and steel-toed leather boots to protect against burns and falling objects.
Whenever a welder suffers a workplace injury, a workers’ comp claim should cover the medical costs, loss of income and the costs of any ongoing disability that might occur. An experienced Pennsylvania workers’ comp attorney may help to ensure that worker rights are upheld and costs are covered properly by workers’ compensation insurance.