Workers widely use non-sparking tools in areas prone to hazards such as blasts and explosions. Generally, explosions occur due to the flying of sparks and conventional hand tools made of steel contribute to such dangers in a big way. The usage of hand tools made of steel, more often than not, leads to friction. Sparks arising due to friction can lead to fire and explosions of bigger proportions. Therefore, the need for non-sparking tools has gained significance leading to wider usage of hand tools made up of non-ferrous materials.
The fact that hand tools, made up of non-ferrous materials, mitigate the risk of fires caused by sparks to a significant extent has led to an unprecedented rise in demand of these non-sparking tools. Non-sparking tools are made up of non-ferrous materials such as alloys of copper, brass, bronze, nickel, beryllium, and aluminium. Hand tools with a non-ferrous composition are relatively softer as compared to their ferrous counterparts. Non- sparking tools are used in a variety of industries such as chemical, oil-refining, and distribution.
Listed below are some tips for safe and effective use of non-sparking hand tools:
a) Ensure proper cleanliness: It is necessary to keep hand tools clean so that they do not gather dust and end up having a layer of rust on them. Rusted tools are more prone to causing sparks, thereby, triggering unforeseen fires and explosions.
b) Routine maintenance: A scheduled maintenance of tools not only enhances their longevity but also raises their efficiency by a few notches.
c) Store hand tools in adequately ventilated spaces: It is essential to store hand tools in spaces with cross ventilation so that tools do not gather moisture and dust over a period of time. It has been observed that dust accumulation can lead to erratic sparks and fires in vulnerable circumstances.
d) Follow users' manual diligently: Abide by user’s manual provided by the manufacturer in letter and spirit. It pays to follow dos and don'ts meticulously as prescribed by the manufacturer.