What is MIG Welding? |
MIG stands for Metal Inert Gas. Therefore Metal welding is a welding process that uses a wire connected to a source of current to join two pieces of metal. Gas is usually passed through a welding gun along with the wire so that the welding zone is kept safe from contamination. The great thing about the MIG welding is the speed with which it allows metals to get welded. It is often used for welding softer materials. MIG welding is preferred by those in the automobile industry for a number of reasons. First it is extremely versatile and can be used in welding different metals and alloys. Secondly, the gas that is used as a protective shield makes it possible to produce a clean weld.
What are the Hazards?
There are a number of hazards associated with welding in general and MIG welding in particular. One of the most common hazards is what is known as the welding arc eye. 'Welding Arc Eye' is actually photokeratitis, which is a painful eye condition that results from exposure of the eyes to harmful UV rays. It is also known as sunburn of the cornea or conjunctiva and is not normally noticed until after a long period of exposure.
UV light is another area that could be potentially hazardous because of the strength of the light from MIG welding. This light easily causes sunburn to exposed areas of the skin.
Another hazard is one which comes from the exposure from fumes and metal vapors. When metals are melted, they release fumes and vapors that can be harmful to those who inhale them. Fumes and vapor from aluminum alloy and zinc coatings in particular are very poisonous. MIG welding can give up fumes which have terrible effects. The problem with a lot of these harmful fumes and vapors arises from the fact that some have neither smell nor color and would have caused damage before they are noticed.
Fire is another hazard which workers face in almost all forms of welding work. However, this is easily preventable and should a stray spark kindle fire, also easily handled.
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