Recently, Major Tool purchased powered air purifying respirators (PAPR’s) for all of our welders to better protect them from fumes and particulate generated from welding and grinding.
Prior to having the PAPR’s, where a welder was positioned in relation to fumes, even when using other engineered controls, made a big difference in their personal exposure. We always optimize the position of our larger parts and odd configurations to minimize exposure. There are still situations that make it difficult for the person to position themselves away from welding fumes even after optimizing the best part positions and using previously available engineered controls. The PAPR helmets eliminate any exposure no matter how our employees are positioned. The helmets allow our welders to grind or weld wearing the same helmet which improves productivity by reducing time and effort of the person to make equipment changes. In addition to the benefits of fume and particulate protection, it also provides extra protection against potential flash burns to the eyes. For added welder comfort the PAPR system also helps to keep our employees cool during welding.