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Boiler Safety Training: Why is it Important for your Employees?

Reliable, efficient, environmentally friendly, and used in nearly every industry, boiler systems have the ability to generate energy, heat buildings large and small. But they can also be dangerous if employees are not properly trained in their operations, maintenance, and safety.

Each year, boilers malfunction. Often, this results in explosions, the force of which is equal to that of a bomb, according to the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspections. Sometimes these malfunctions are the result of defect boilers themselves. Often they are the result of improper maintenance, a dearth of inspections, or safety oversights.

Many of these explosions could likely be avoided if employees had the proper training and a clear understanding of the potential dangers of malfunctioning or unmaintained boiler systems.

Here’s a look at why training employees on boiler safety is critically important:

Boilers are everywhere

Boilers can be found heating buildings and generating energy in every part of the world (according to information provided by ReportLinker)–and the industry is growing rapidly.

According to Consulting-Specifying Engineer, a trade publication that covers the boiler industry, an increased interest in environmentally friendly, sustainable energy sources is driving significant interest in boilers for both commercial and industrial use.

Boilers are used in the construction industry, to produce cement, run steam turbines, and generate electricity. Large-scale laundry facilities use boilers to heat water. Oil refineries, chemical manufacturing plants, and food processing plants are just some of the ways organizations large and small leverage the power of boilers.

They are everywhere, which means companies in every industry need people who have the knowledge and skills to properly maintain them.

Safety matters

With so many organizations and people depending on boilers, it’s imperative that employees invest in boiler safety training. Neglecting boiler maintenance can have dire consequences, including lost revenue, injury, and, worst of all, death.

Of course, getting employees up to speed on the ins and outs of boiler safety isn’t something that can typically be accomplished in an hour or even a day-long course.

Boilers are complex machines with many moving parts. They produce immense pressure and heat. In addition, they present a long list of safety concerns, including:

  • Hot surfaces. Because boilers generate so much heat, even non-heated surfaces can become dangerously hot. Employees–especially new employees–need to be made aware the conditions and trained how to exercise extreme caution when working around boiler systems.
  • Rotating equipment. Boiler components that rotate pose a risk to every employee who comes into contact with them. Loose clothing and jewelry increases this risk because it could become caught in the incredibly powerful and unforgiving machinery.
  • Electrical hazards. The electrical components of boiler systems can produce potentially hazardous amounts of electrical currents. It’s important for employees to have a deep understanding of how to work with the electrical components of the boiler system.

These are only a few of the safety concerns associated with boiler safety. Others include steam leaks, hot flying ash, defective safety valves, defective pressure gauges, water levels, and steam.

Because the safety risks are so incredibly vast, its important that all employees who will or could come into contact with the boiler system have proper training.

Training matters

Knowledge is power–and it can keep employees and profits safe.

One of the best ways to ensure that employees have the knowledge and skills to keep themselves and others safe is to seek out training opportunities. In the case of boiler systems, training should focus on three key areas:

  • Boiler components, construction, and combustion. If employees do not have a deep understanding of how boilers are built and how they operate, they may put themselves or others in danger.
  • Boiler operation. Knowing about the different boiler components is only one part of the safety equation. It is also important for employees to know with precision how to operate boilers so they can keep them running effectively, efficiently, and safely–every day, without exception.
  • Boiler maintenance. Proper maintenance is probably the most important way to prevent dangerous boiler problems. If employees have the knowledge and skills to maintain a boiler system, they will be better prepared to identify problems and address them before they become dangerous.

Learn more about boiler safety training opportunities

Boilers are wonderful machines that have enhanced the lives of people around the world and across the country–but they can also be dangerous if employees are not properly trained in safety protocols, operations, and maintenance.

If you work with boilers and are interested in enhancing your knowledge, skills, and the overall safety of your organization, connect with NTT Training today to learn about our seminar focused on technical and operational training for boiler systems.

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