The following is based upon Federal Regulations(Standards-29 CFR) part 1926, safety and health regulations for construction, subpart J, welding and cutting, 1926.350. Any individual engaged in welding and cutting must demonstrate compliance with these provisions.
Transporting, moving, and storing compressed gas cylinders.
Valve protection caps shall be in place and secured.
When cylinders are hoisted, they shall be secured on a cradle, slingboard, or pallet. They shall not be hoisted or transported by means of magnets or choker slings.
Cylinders shall be moved by tilting and rolling them on their bottom edges. They shall not be intentionally dropped, struck, or permitted to strike each other violently.
When cylinders are transported by powered vehicles, they shall be secured in a vertical position.
Valve protection caps shall not be used for lifting cylinders from one vertical position to another. Bars shall not be used under valves or valve protection caps to pry cylinders loose when frozen. Warm, not boiling, water shall be used to thaw cylinders loose.
Unless cylinders are firmly secured on a special carrier intended for this purpose, regulators shall be removed and valve protection caps put in place before cylinders are moved.
A suitable cylinder truck, chain, or other steadying device shall be used to keep cylinders from being knocked over while in use.
When work is finished, when cylinders are empty, or when cylinders are moved at any time, the cylinder valve shall be closed.
Compressed gas cylinders shall be secured in an upright position at all times except, if necessary, for short periods of time while cylinders are actually being hoisted or carried.
Oxygen cylinders in storage shall be separated from fuel-gas cylinders or combustible materials (especially oil or grease), a minimum distance of 20 feet (6.1 m) or by a noncombustible barrier at least 5 feet (1.5 m) high having a fire-resistance rating of at least one-half hour.
Inside of buildings, cylinders shall be stored in a well-protected, well-ventilated, dry location, at least 20 feet (6.1 m) from highly combustible materials such as oil or excelsior. Cylinders should be stored in definitely assigned places away from elevators, stairs, or gangways. Assigned storage places shall be located where cylinders will not be knocked over or damaged by passing or falling objects, or subject to tampering by unauthorized persons. Cylinders shall not be kept in unventilated enclosures such as lockers and cupboards.
The in-plant handling, storage, and utilization of all compressed gases in cylinders, portable tanks, rail tankcars, or motor vehicle cargo tanks shall be in accordance with Compressed Gas Association Pamphlet P-1-1965.
Cylinders shall be kept far enough away from the actual welding or cutting operation so that sparks, hot slag, or flame will not reach them. When this is impractical, fire resistant shields shall be provided.
Cylinders shall be placed where they cannot become part of an electrical circuit. Electrodes shall not be struck against a cylinder to strike an arc.
Fuel gas cylinders shall be placed with valve end up whenever they are in use. They shall not be placed in a location where they would be subject to open flame, hot metal, or other sources of artificial heat.
Cylinders containing oxygen or acetylene or other fuel gas shall not be taken into confined spaces.
Treatment of cylinders.
Cylinders, whether full or empty, shall not be used as rollers or supports.
No person other than the gas supplier shall attempt to mix gases in a cylinder. No one except the owner of the cylinder or person authorized by him, shall refill a cylinder. No one shall use a cylinder’s contents for purposes other than those intended by the supplier. All cylinders used shall meet the Department of Transportation requirements published in 49 CFR Part 178, Subpart C, Specification for Cylinders.
No damaged or defective cylinder shall be used.
1926.350(d) Use of fuel gas. The employer shall thoroughly instruct employees in the safe use of fuel gas, as follows:
Before a regulator to a cylinder valve is connected, the valve shall be opened slightly and closed immediately. (This action is generally termed “cracking” and is intended to clear the valve of dust or dirt that might otherwise enter the regulator.) The person cracking the valve shall stand to one side of the outlet, not in front of it. The valve of a fuel gas cylinder shall not be cracked where the gas would reach welding work, sparks, flame, or other possible sources of ignition.
The cylinder valve shall always be opened slowly to prevent damage to the regulator. For quick closing, valves on fuel gas cylinders shall not be opened more than 1 1/2 turns. When a special wrench is required, it shall be left in position on the stem of the valve while the cylinder is in use so that the fuel gas flow can be shut off quickly in case of an emergency. In the case of manifolded or coupled cylinders, at least one such wrench shall always be available for immediate use. Nothing shall be placed on top of a fuel gas cylinder, when in use, which may damage the safety device or interfere with the quick closing of the valve.
Fuel gas shall not be used from cylinders through torches or other devices which are equipped with shutoff valves without reducing the pressure through a suitable regulator attached to the cylinder valve or manifold.
Before a regulator is removed from a cylinder valve, the cylinder valve shall always be closed and the gas released from the regulator.
If, when the valve on a fuel gas cylinder is opened, there is found to be a leak around the valve stem, the valve shall be closed and the gland nut tightened. If this action does not stop the leak, the use of the cylinder shall be discontinued, and it shall be properly tagged and removed from the work area. In the event that fuel gas should leak from the cylinder valve, rather than from the valve stem, and the gas cannot be shut off, the cylinder shall be properly tagged and removed from the work area. If a regulator attached to a cylinder valve will effectively stop a leak through the valve seat, the cylinder need not be removed from the work area.
If a leak should develop at a fuse plug or other safety device, the cylinder shall be removed from the work area.
Fuel gas and oxygen manifolds.
Fuel gas and oxygen manifolds shall bear the name of the substance they contain in letters at least 1-inch high which shall be either painted on the manifold or on a sign permanently attached to it.
Fuel gas and oxygen manifolds shall be placed in safe, well ventilated, and accessible locations. They shall not be located within enclosed spaces.
Manifold hose connections, including both ends of the supply hose that lead to the manifold, shall be such that the hose cannot be interchanged between fuel gas and oxygen manifolds and supply header connections. Adapters shall not be used to permit the interchange of hose. Hose connections shall be kept free of grease and oil.
When not in use, manifold and header hose connections shall be capped.
Nothing shall be placed on top of a manifold, when in use, which will damage the manifold or interfere with the quick closing of the valves.
Fuel gas hose and oxygen hose shall be easily distinguishable from each other. The contrast may be made by different colors or by surface characteristics readily distinguishable by the sense of touch. Oxygen and fuel gas hoses shall not be interchangeable. A single hose having more than one gas passage shall not be used.
When parallel sections of oxygen and fuel gas hose are taped together, not more than 4 inches out of 12 inches shall be covered by tape.
All hose in use, carrying acetylene, oxygen, natural or manufactured fuel gas, or any gas or substance which may ignite or enter into combustion, or be in any way harmful to employees, shall be inspected at the beginning of each working shift. Defective hose shall be removed from service.
Hose which has been subject to flashback, or which shows evidence of severe wear or damage, shall be tested to twice the normal pressure to which it is subject, but in no case less than 300 p.s.i. Defective hose, or hose in doubtful condition, shall not be used.
Hose couplings shall be of the type that cannot be unlocked or disconnected by means of a straight pull without rotary motion.
Boxes used for the storage of gas hose shall be ventilated.
Hoses, cables, and other equipment shall be kept clear of passageways, ladders and stairs.
Clogged torch tip openings shall be cleaned with suitable cleaning wires, drills, or other devices designed for such purpose.
Torches in use shall be inspected at the beginning of each working shift for leaking shutoff valves, hose couplings, and tip connections. Defective torches shall not be used.
Torches shall be lighted by friction lighters or other approved devices, and not by matches or from hot work.
Regulators and gauges. Oxygen and fuel gas pressure regulators, including their related gauges, shall be in proper working order while in use.
Oil and grease hazards. Oxygen cylinders and fittings shall be kept away from oil or grease. Cylinders, cylinder caps and valves, couplings, regulators, hose, and apparatus shall be kept free from oil or greasy substances and shall not be handled with oily hands or gloves. Oxygen shall not be directed at oily surfaces, greasy clothes, or within a fuel oil or other storage tank or vessel.