Learn about the dangers of blasting, how to stay safe while blasting, and what to do if an accident does occur.
Published 19 Dec 2022
Working with explosives is inherently dangerous. Understanding blasting safety and putting it into practice can mean distinguishing between a successful blast and an absolute disaster. Blasting safety involves assessing, controlling, monitoring, and managing risk throughout the entire process of a blast, from site selection to clean-up. It's essential for all members of the blasting crew to have a thorough knowledge of the dangers involved and to utilize protective gear, including glasses or face shields, hard hats, hearing protection, and flame-resistant clothing.
A “Blaster-in-Charge” (BIC) must oversee all the blasting operations. This person is held accountable for completing all tasks associated with these activities. Additionally, a thorough inspection of new blasting sites is necessary for hazards and environmental impacts.
Before beginning a blast, the BIC should get all blast crew personnel together to review the plans for security and emergencies in the blast area. The blast area is any place where people could get hurt from flying materials, air pressure, or gases from an explosion. The Blaster-in-Charge should discuss the following topics:
BICs must coordinate with all relevant parties to ensure that all blasts are completed on time. Appropriate methods for clearing and guarding should be established and monitored regularly to guarantee successful execution.
Here are the key safety considerations BICs and blasting crews should consider while shooting the blast:
If the blast misfires, take the following measures:
Every site should have a custom emergency plan that reflects the specific needs of that location. At a bare minimum, however, all plans should include the following:
Eliminate manual tasks and streamline your operations.
Every blast should have its report outlining the essential details. These reports must include:
Blasting remains the most efficient and cost-effective technique of excavating rock for construction, quarrying, or mining operations. Structures like tunnels, bridges, and buildings use it to create open faces by breaking down large rock formations into manageable pieces. Without explosives, many projects would be unaffordable and never come to fruition.
Blasting is obliterating rocks or rock-hard soil into tiny pieces using explosives. This undertaking necessitates drilling holes, placing a detonator and explosive charge, setting off the charges, then disposing of broken material.
In blasting, up to eight boreholes can be loaded and discharged simultaneously, depending on the borehole’s size and depth. The boreholes can also be loaded and fired in any sequence. The sequence of the blast plan usually determines this.
To ensure safety, people must be at least 200 meters from the blasting site. The area should also be free of ignition sources and flammable materials. Furthermore, all personnel should wear safety equipment such as ear protection and eye protection during blasting operations.
The key to a safe and successful blasting operation is compliance with regulations, guidelines, and best practices. With SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor), you can easily create a checklist that includes the key elements of blasting safety, including abrasive blasting operations. Additionally, you can do the following:
Rob Paredes is a content contributor for SafetyCulture. He is a content writer who also does copy for websites, sales pages, and landing pages. Rob worked as a financial advisor, a freelance copywriter, and a Network Engineer for more than a decade before joining SafetyCulture. He got interested in writing because of the influence of his friends; aside from writing, he has an interest in personal finance, dogs, and collecting Allen Iverson cards.
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