L-101 hosts welding exhaust study

Participating in a recent welding exhaust study are, first row, left to right, Local 101 members Mickey Roer, Blayne Graham, T.R. Thayer, and Mykola Savechenko. Second row, Mark Garrett, D-H&SS; Vince Shelly, Local 101; Jesus Alfero, Local 101; Pam Susi, CPWR; Oleg Vdovich, L-101; and Andre Green L-101. Not in picture is Sergio Caporali, PhD, of the University of Puerto Rico.

Group seeks to measure training effectiveness

EIGHT VOLUNTEERS FROM Local 101, Denver, recently participated in a two-phase pilot study at the lodge designed to measure the effectiveness of local exhaust ventilation (LEV) training. The study is being carried out by the Center for Construction Research & Training (CPWR) and a consortium of university researchers.

Boilermakers Health and Safety Services Director Mark Garrett was on hand to observe the study, which was performed by Pam Susi of CPWR and Sergio Caporali, PhD, of the University of Puerto Rico.

The first phase was conducted Dec. 11, 2012. The volunteers were asked to perform a welding exercise, and measurements were taken of welding fumes released into the welders’ work space. Next, the volunteers received instruction on the dangers of welding fumes to the respiratory system as well as the proper use of local exhaust ventilation. This was followed by a redo of the welding exercise, with new measurements taken.

On Feb. 8, 2013, the second phase was conducted to determine how well the volunteers retained the training.

“Local exhaust ventilation is very important for the continued health of our members and all welders,” Garrett said. “It is proven that exposure to high levels of welding fumes and gases lead to respiratory issues.

“I want to thank Local Lodge 101 Business Manager Tim Ruth for allowing CPWR to use the training center for this important pilot study. The lodge’s state-of-the-art ventilation system was exactly what the group needed to evaluate. Boilermakers are the leaders in welding, and it is only fitting that we are involved in this important research.”

Garrett said other trades that weld will also be included in the study.