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In any cryogenic material supplier company, safeguarding the employees becomes a major duty of the company. Less number of accidents indicates the greater success of the company. The image of the company is directly proportional to the number of accidents that have occurred in a company. Thus, cryogenic materials companies always need to get the best safety equipment for their employees, so as to protect them from harm.
Let us briefly look into what all hazards can come up if safety equipment is not used attentively.
The chief challenge with cryogens is the safety of the person who is handling them. All the cryogenic gases possess potential safety issues beyond the freeze hazard. As they return to their original form of gas, they start expanding rapidly, many times greater than their original volume as a liquid.
For instance, nitrogen expands itself to 700 times its liquid volume. Consequently, the expanding gas can swiftly displace other gases. In such cases, oxygen becomes the central concern. Oxygen displacement can lead to asphyxiation or death.
Also, extreme cold can quickly freeze skin tissue, that is why dermatologists use liquid nitrogen frequently to freeze unwanted tissue. Nonetheless, this causes danger to healthy tissue when it comes in contact with the frozen tissue. The skin can split and freeze, leading to frostbite. Therefore, while using this method, it is in the best interest of the person using nitrogen to wear gloves along with personal protective equipment.
Inert gas asphyxiation results from inhaling a gas when there is an absence of oxygen, or a low amount of oxygen is present rather than air. Physiologically, inert gases like liquid nitrogen do not act upon haemoglobin or the heart. It reduces oxygen concentration instead in the blood to lower levels, causing deprivation in the cells of oxygen.
Inhaling these gases with lacking oxygen can prove to have serious and immediate effects after just a few short breaths. Gases like liquid nitrogen have no smell or taste. Thus, it’s impossible to know whether you are breathing in the hazardous gas or not.
There are tools in the market that measures ambient air oxygen intensity in real-time. Then it alerts you when the oxygen levels fall down more than the standard. Also, the use of PPE is always recommended while handling cryogenic material.
Cryogenically rated gloves should have a loose fit. The gloves need to be loose-fitting so that it gets easy to remove them quickly if the liquid leaks in. But remember that cryogenic gloves are not meant for prolonged handling of cryogenically frozen materials or for immersion into cryogenic liquids.
Make sure you use insulated gloves. It’s better to use tongs to handle objects that are in touch with cryogenic material. Always ask for industrial and lab gloves, as other gloves may not serve the cryogenic needs of the user.
One should wear suitable protective clothing and carry appropriate equipment. Along with gloves, eye and face protection, and footwear are a must. Some gases may need specialized safety equipment like air-line respirators and self-contained breathing equipment.
Use the following safety equipment as well.
Use Facilities Engineering: Facilities exhaust, gas cabinets, and fume hoods are required for ventilation. Gas cylinder clamps, brackets, supports, and restraints will come in use during storage. Monitoring systems will be appropriate for the gases that are highly hazardous.
By following the aforementioned points, you can easily avoid untoward accidents in your industry and keep growing as a brand.