Some jobs should only be handled by professionals. Industrial painting is one of them, especially when it comes to painting within confined areas. These tightly enclosed environments pose a number of challenges to those tasked with painting them, not only making the job difficult to pull off properly, but also making it more dangerous.
If your industrial facility requires maintenance involving new paint coatings, such as industrial tank painting, it’s important to hire professional painting contractors with the experience, equipment, and skills to paint in confined spaces. Let’s discuss the specific challenges and hazards involved in these painting circumstances.
Getting In and Out
In case of emergency, it’s important to always have easy access in and out of the work area. When painting an exterior or inside a standard room, entry and exit is often not a problem. Within storage tanks, silos, and other confined spaces, however, entry and exit is often limited. In order to mitigate this problem, industrial painting contractors will use temporary tools like ladders and platforms to get in and out safely and quickly. They will also prepare for the job by figuring out how long it will take to exit the area, and establish additional safety measures before starting to paint.
Risk of Physical Harm
No matter what or where you’re painting, there is always the risk of getting hit by a falling object, slipping on the floor, or accidentally running into something. Working in a tightly enclosed space often increases the risk of these physical hazards, as there is less room to move and get out of the way quickly. Additionally, it may be harder for painters to see what they’re doing, as light may not easily enter the space. If possible, industrial painters may bring in their own lighting units to maintain clear vision during the job. They will also carefully prepare and secure the area to minimize the risk of physical harm.
The Ability to Breathe
Confined spaces like pipes and tanks often limit the amount of oxygen available for the painters. A lack of oxygen can restrict blood flow to the brain, causing workers to hallucinate, faint, or worse. Commercial industrial painting services must be prepared to deal with a lower oxygen concentration in these enclosed spaces. This means having the proper tools to constantly measure air quality and oxygen levels, finding ways to increase ventilation during work if possible, and knowing when to take breaks if necessary.
Close Proximity to Chemicals
Whether it’s storage tank painting, smokestack painting, or anything else of the sort, industrial painters are often exposed to toxic chemicals that may be ingested or absorbed during work. Monitoring the air quality isn’t just important for checking oxygen levels, but also for ensuring the area is clear of flammable gases, toxic vapors, and other harmful substances that may exist within the confined space. Additionally, workers must wear proper safety equipment (personal protective equipment, or PPE) during painting, such as respirators, gloves, goggles, etc.
Painting tanks, pipes, towers, and other confined spaces is challenging but necessary for proper industrial facility maintenance. This is why you need to hire the right company for your industrial painting needs. At Painters USA, our team is experienced in all industrial painting applications and conditions. Let us keep your facility safe, operational, and beautiful. To learn more about our company and all the services we offer, contact us at 1-800-999-8715.