Welding too close to shop truck results in total loss

Safety Alert Type: 
Hand and Power Tools
near Sayward, BC (northern Vancouver Island)
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Company Name: 
Dyer Logging Co. Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A welder had set up his work area to rest an excavator’s thumb (on a cleanup bucket) on an old landing. The welder positioned the shop truck adjacent to the bucket and set up the excavator thumb on the opposite side of the bucket from the shop truck. The work was positioned to direct sparks away from the shop truck.

The welder was air arcing and welding on the thumb of the excavator. He had completed gouging and was stick welding on the thumb when he heard the welder start to labour. The welder looked up to find the shop truck on fire around the arc welder at the front of the service body.

The welder used up his fire extinguishers on the truck and was unable to put out the fire. He called for assistance but the truck body and cab was fully engulfed in flames when assistance arrived. The shop truck and equipment were totally destroyed (see photo in attached pdf).

Learnings and Suggestions: 

• Ensure set up of welding, cutting or air arcing work is located away from all flammable substances

• Locate shop truck a minimum of 20 feet from welding activity

• Be conscious of direction of sparks, flame, or hot slag from welding activity

• Be aware of potential “blow back” of sparks or slag when using air arc

• Use welding blankets to protect paint, glass, or isolate flammables

• Check work area frequently to ensure no stray sparks or hot slag is shouldering

• If necessary, wet down area prior to commencement of welding

• Get assistance to watch for sparks where any fire potential exists

For more information on this submitted alert: 

For more information contact: Ted Arkell, Dyer Logging Co. Ltd. (250) 282-3381 t.arkell@dyerlog.ca


File attachments
Welding too close to shop truck results in total loss.pdf
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