A Hot Work Permit is required for any temporary operation involving open flames or producing heat and/or sparks. This includes, but is not limited to, welding, burning, cutting, brazing, grinding and soldering. The Hot Work Permit is really nothing more than a formal checklist to ensure that potential safety issues are addressed in the area you will be doing the work and that someone else agrees it is safe to do the work.
Such work can create heat and sparks which could ignite nearby items unless they are protected. Requirements of the hot permit include things like:
- Floors will be swept clean.
- Flammable liquids, dust, lint, and oily deposits will be removed.
- Ducts and conveyor systems will be protected or shut down to prevent sparks from being carried to other combustibles.
- All combustibles will be removed where possible; otherwise, area will be protected with fire resistive tarpaulins or metal shields.
- Portable fire extinguisher, suitable for the type of possible fire, will be readily available at the work area.
Depending on the area and the work being done a firewatch person may be needed in the area during and after the work is completed.
Some think of the Hot Work Permit as just another piece of paper to fill out while trying to get the job done. However, enough fires have occurred during these types of operations that a formal checklist is required. The hot work permit helps us all ensure that the area is safe for such operations so that we have a place to return to work to tomorrow.