Waterjet Accident Presentation In the accident, a worker in the industrial cleaning industry was killed while cleaning a pipe with a waterjet.
Waterjet systems are heavy-duty pressure washers with truck-mounted pumps and engines (of about 600 h.p.). They are used in industries like oil and gas, and pulp and paper. Waterjet Accident Investigation
With pressures up to 40,000 psi, they are much more powerful than a home pressure washer. The spray from a waterjet can cut like a power saw. Waterjet Accident Investigation
In pulp mills, residue builds up inside process pipes. The worker had been trying to clean out the lime residue from the end of this pipe using a 20,000 psi flex-lance. Waterjet Accident Investigation
A flex-lance is basically a high-pressure hose with a nozzle on the end used to clean the interior surfaces of pipes. Waterjet Accident Investigation
The nozzle on a flex-lance blasts water backwards and forwards, self- propelling the hose through a pipe. Waterjet Accident Investigation
When cleaning a pipe with a flex-lance, workers insert the lance into the pipe, blast out the residue, and then withdraw the lance. Waterjet Accident Investigation
In the accident, the worker was cleaning out the end of a pipe above him. He was standing 8 to 12 feet back from the pipe, using a new flex-lance. New flex-lances tend to want to recoil. Waterjet Accident Investigation
The worker lost control of the flex-lance. It came out of the pipe, recoiled, and bored into his upper body. Waterjet Accident Investigation
Safe Work Practices A jetting gun, not a flex-lance, should be used to clean the end of a pipe.
Safe Work Practices To clean the rest of a pipe, a flex-lance can be used along with a backout preventer.
Safe Work Practices Mark each flex-hose with paint two feet from the outlet end to help indicate where the end of the hose is when the hose is inside a pipe.
Safe Work Practices Work from a scaffold or platform to ensure that the hose or lance can be positioned no higher than your shoulders and no lower than your feet.
Safe Work Practices Flow to the lance is controlled by a worker stepping on or off a foot dump. Ensure that the worker handling the lance has direct control of the foot dump.
Safe Work Practices Wear eye and hearing protection, as well as protective boots and clothing. Consider Kevlar-lined garments.
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