Metal Indusry

Metal Industry

Helping to protect you in challenging environments

Safety solutions for the metal industry

3M helps to keep you safer in a changing world. From smelting to fabrication our technology, expertise and energy drive innovative solutions to help you control your environment so you can focus on the job at hand. We provide safety solutions that improve comfort while helping employers increase compliance, with personal protective equipment for everything from your eyes to ears and respiratory system.




Hazards in the metal industry and 3M PPE to consider

  • respiratory hazards

    Respiratory Hazards

    Metal dust and fume associated with melting, fabrication or treatment processes can cause irritation and illness and can lead to serious health problems such as occupational asthma, lung cancer or systemic damage.
    Refractory materials used in hot processes and materials used in mould and pattern making can be potential sources of crystalline silica dust. Exposure to respirable crystalline silica is associated with chronic lung diseases such as cancer and tuberculosis. Gases, vapours and mists are commonplace and result from a variety of different sources. Organic vapours from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and coal tar pitch volatiles (CTPVs) may arise from anode production in the aluminium industry or coke production.
    A range of gases and vapours may arise from mould and core making such as formaldehyde, amines or isocyanates. Acid gases and vapours are found in many metal production processes from HF and SO2 in aluminium smelting, pickling processes for cleaning metal, electroplating and polishing processes.

  • head,eye, face hazards

    Head, Eye and Face Hazards

    Welding, cutting, tapping, melting and pouring operations may generate high level of ultraviolet, infra-red and visible light requiring appropriate protective equipment to minimise exposure for the worker. High levels of exposure to optical radiation that may lead to a range of eye and skin problems such as conjunctivitis, cataracts and retinal damage. Flying particles from processes such as cutting, grinding, scarfing or stamping are a potential cause of eye and face injury. Appropriate guarding or the use of eye and face protection can help minimise exposure for your workers.

  • noise hazards

    Noise Hazards

    Metal industry processes often involve heavy machinery moving large amounts of material in difficult spaces – cranes, fork-trucks and loaders operate continuously.

    In situations where high levels of hearing protection are required, isolation of thewearer is a real risk. Combining hearing protection with communication solutions offers the wearer increased situational awareness when required.

  • communication

    Communication Solutions

    There was a time when wearing hearing protectors meant being isolated and out of contact in noisy environments such as those found in the metal industry. Those days are over. Today 3M™ PELTOR™ Communication Solutions make it possible for users of hearing protectors to communicate very effectively - with their immediate environment and with people further away.

  • welding hazards

    Welding Hazards

    Welding produces many hazards – electrical hazards, light hazards, metal fume, thermal hazards and gases including ozone. Metal fume consists of very fine particles which may damage the lungs and cause short term adverse health effects such as metal fume fever and other longer-term respiratory illnesses.

    Ozone can also result in irritation and damage of the upper respiratory tract and longer-term lung damage. Welding shields must be used to provide eye and face protection. Respiratory protection worn under or integrated into the welding shield will reduce exposure to metal fume, however, for welding applications, a respirator that additionally provides ozone protection is required.

  • orking at height

    Working at Height

    Heavy industry means your workplaces are complex with people working on multiple levels and around heavy machinery such as cranes. Risk associated with falling objects, are commonplace and can lead to serious injuries and death.

    Engineering solutions such as covered walkways and kickboards are a potential solution and administrative controls on access and movement around machinery can help. For risks associated with small falling objects industrial safety helmets can offer a level of protection.

    View suggested 3M fall protection products for the metal industry

  • skin protection

    Skin Protection

    Contact with harmful chemicals or accidental splashes can lead to serious injuries or severe irritation and dermatitis after long term exposure. Chemicals are used widely in many heavy industrial settings and appropriate skin and eye and face protection can help to reduce the risk of exposure to splashes

    View suggested 3M protective coverall products for the metal industry

The Science of Safety

3M’s new Science of Safety approach can support you with guidance on:

3M delivers consistent quality around the world helping you select the correct PPE for your workers, helping to ensure your workers are educated on the correct use of PPE and raising awareness of how important fit and comfort are to the health and wellbeing of your worforce.

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