In 2019 the HSE released new guidance from the International Agency for Research on Cancer with regards to the harmful effects of welding fumes. New evidence showed that even exposure to mild steel welding fumes can cause lung and possibly kidney cancer. As a result, responsible employers are ensuring they put in place measures to protect their employees.
Western Air Ducts have undertaken many installations of welding fume extract systems over our 47-year history and will recommend at least 90% of the time that a centralised system is installed as opposed to relying on portable or mobile extraction units. This gives the ability to provide a higher extract volume at the extract face and minimal operating costs associated with centralised systems. This is in contrast to the regular and high cost of filter replacement associated with portable filter units.
An example of this type of project is one we recently undertook for a small engineering business near Bristol. The company in question had previously been advised to purchase two portable units and, when they questioned the filter replacement cost and expected frequency, they worked out that although, the initial capital cost of a centralised system was higher, when the running and filter replacement costs were factored in, the centralised system was cheaper within 12-months. It also gave a better performance and the savings would only accumulate over time.