Hot work permit system purpose and Hazards in Detail

Hot work is dangerous work that has claimed a number of lives over the past years and continues due to various hazards associated with it and lack of awareness and proper information of control measures. In this detailed article, we are going to discuss the Purposes and Hazards of the Hot work permit system.

The permit-to-work system is crucial for the industry as it is an administrative part that helps to create a safe working environment. We discussed the importance of work permits in detail along with the types of work permits at the workplace, of which hot work permits are one. We also discussed confined space entry in detail, including examples and precautions.

Metals are widely used in any chemical industry as equipment used in the manufacturing process is made up of metals like stainless steel, mild steel, nickel, and many more. These metal equipment, and especially pipelines, damage over time because of various reasons and cause punctures from joints and leakage, line broker and damage. Apart from those, the fabrication of new lines, providing tapping in the existing line, and removal of lines are some of the job in which welding work is required.

As hot work is very risky and has high potential to cause human and property damage, proper safety measure are needed to be taken and the best approach to avoid hazards are permitted to work. Permit to hot work can help to minimize the risk and help to prepare in case of emergency.

hot work permit safety permit

The safety officer must have proper knowledge of hot work as any mishap can result in huge human and property loss. Safety is everyone’s responsibility. Hence, If you are a process engineer, production engineer, and maintenance engineer, you should be aware of the hazards of hot work and precautions that need to be considered while planning for the job. So, without wasting more time, let us dive .

What is Hot Work

Job or activity refers to a hot work job if the ignition source is generated through heat, spark, or open flame. In other words, a job in which a spark or heat is generated that can cause fire is known as hot work. This can be classified as Direct hot work and Indirect hot work. When the work is being conducted, and it involves equipment producing or liberating open flames, it falls under direct hot work. If equipment like a grinder is used because sparks are generated, it is indirect hot work.

 Examples of hot work in industries

  • Welding of pipe, brazing, and soldering.
  • Gas cutting
  • Metal Grinding and cutting.
  • Use of flame to heat
  • Use of hot air blowers and heaters

Purpose of Hot Work Permit Form

The primary purpose of the hot work permit system is to reduce hazards related to hot job. This claims to take life in numbers every year, and most of them are due to a lack of proper knowledge and failure to identify potential hazards.

A hot work permit is an administrative tool and a checklist that helps the working personnel to check and identify all the associated hazards and takes proper controlling measures and thereby reducing the risk of an accident while performing hot work tasks. Hence, the purpose of the permit is to reduce the risk involved in hot jobs and prepare in case of emergency.

What are the hazards of hot work?

Hot work generates a source of ignition that has the potential to complete a fire triangle if the flammable/ explosive material present in the area and atmosphere contains a sufficient volume of oxygen. These jobs can be very dangerous, and because of that, there are a number of hazards associated with them.

  • Hazards like fire to equipment or in an area, explosions, and skin burns to humans are associated with hot work.
  • Confined space is at risk of accumulating dangerous gases.
  • A metal spark from the grind in eye.
  • Exposure to Harmful UV or Infrared Light.
  • This also includes electrical equipment, hence electrical hazards like shocks due to faulty wiring, short circuits and fatal electrocution.

What is hot work safety precautions?

Every work that in needed to be done should be performed by the person wearing personal protective equipment. Suitable eye and face protection should be ensured.

  • The area must be checked and should be free from the presence of any flammable substance or material. There are flammable gas detectors available that can detect the presence of flammable gases in the area.
  • The LEL% limit for hot work is 0%, and no permit should be approved if LEL is 10% or above.
  • Proper equipment like welding helmets and other equipment required for the job must be standardized and checked its integrity.
  • The area where the hot job must be performed must have proper ventilation.
  • A fire extinguisher must be available in the area where job in progress.
  • A standby trained fire person (Fire watch person) should be deployed where the work needs to be performed.
  • The area should be barricaded and no unauthorized person should be allowed to enter the premises.

Now, we have learned all about hazards and safety precautions, but there can be a possibility that human error can miss out on some important points while inspecting and make it dangerous to work. In order to eliminate those risks, a hot work permit is prepared which will help to reduce any human error while identifying hazards and cause accidents.

Hot work permit procedure

  • Firstly, the production department’s authorized person will inspect the job that needs to be done and involves the generation of heat or falls under Hot work.
  • Now, they discuss the work with the maintenance department regarding it and they identify the hazards associated with the work. The maintenance department will arrange all the equipment and manpower required for the work and check the integrity of the equipment which is going to be used in the task.
  • After inspecting, the production department prepares a permit for the task after inspecting according to the checklist and options present in the permit form.
  • After the production department supervisor prepares the permit, it is then sent to the production manager or area manager for approval, where he verifies all the checkpoints.
  • After approval, the permit is sent to the maintenance department engineer for verification, and the person who will perform that job is being. After that, the permit is sent to the head of the maintenance department for approval.
  • After approval from the production and maintenance department, the safety office is informed by the permit, and he then verifies all the points on the permit with arrangements.
  • If required, he does the arrangement, i.e. assigns a fireman for supervision, provides PPEs or fire fighting equipment to make the work safer, and then asks the maintenance department to proceed with the job.

This is the proper hot work permit flow where, apart from the checklist, senior persons are being taken for approval to avoid mistakes.

Hot work permit Checklist

Here are the points that are present as the checklist in the permit and special emphasis should be given to these hot work checklists.

  • Area barricading.
  • LEL should be checked and should be noted in the work permit
  • Air samples should be sent, and the area should be free from flammable gases.
  • The drain should be covered.
  • If cutting is involved in the pipe, then the pipe should be free from flammable gases or chemicals.
  • Certified electrical tools and equipment to be used.
  • Fire blanket and fire booth.
  • All the PPEs should be provided to the labourers working on the job.
  • Presence of a Fire extinguisher and fire water hose near the job.

FAQ (Hot work permit)

1. When is a Hot Work Permit Necessary?

When even a work that needs to be conducted includes a job when the temperature is going to be high or spark will be generated, it is required.

2. When is a hot work permit required?

If any activity or job in needed to be performed and it produces an ignition source through heat, spark, or open flame then a hot work permit is required to conduct such job.

3. Who issues a hot work permit?

The production department issues the permit to the maintenance department to conduct work, and work approval is obtained from the head of the department and safety officer.

4. What is a work permit in welding?

For welding work, a hot work permit is to be issued as the work includes the generation of sparks, and heat will be generated.

Wrapping Up

This was a detailed guide on Hot work permits in the chemical industry. If you have any doubts or have any suggestions, you can use the comment section to talk to us. We had covered other work permits as well in detail which a production and maintenance person should be aware of. Another work that comes next to this is a confined space work permit which we also cover in detail, so read that also. You can follow us on LinkedIn – Chemical Tweak to stay updated with our articles and download our Android app.

Me - Founder of Chemical Tweak - A Chemical Engineer by profession and a part-time self-trained technology blogger.

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