​16. Unit specific safety issues

This section deals with the most important safety issues in various operating units.

Because many of you will be moving between a number of worksites, you must read the information for all the units.

Under the health and safety coordination procedure, the local supervisor for each unit takes you through the safety regulations that apply at the worksites in question.

If you have any questions or uncertainties, contact the supervisor and obtain the necessary answers. We like to take good care of all people who work at Avesta Steelworks and do not wish you to take any chances that may result in injury or the risk of future disability.

Raw materials

Lorries and railway wagons

The raw materials area is heavily used by, amongst other things, trucks, lorries and railway wagons. Generally, the view from the cabs of these vehicles is very limited. Thus, even greater care has to be exercised in this area. Reflective vests must be worn by all people entering this area.

Falling objects   When visiting the scrap yard, remember that scrap may start moving in the scrap bins. Be observant at all times. During transport, scrap may also fall from the grab.

Noise

Ear protectors must be worn in the vicinity of the scrap bins and during unloading and loading.

Melt shop

Molten steel

Molten steel is worked and transported within the premises. For this reason, it is forbidden to enter large parts of the operating area during production.

Risk of explosion

Any moisture entering the smelt evaporates, expands with great force and can cause explosions. Thus, even during maintenance stops, do not stand or pass close to hot steel. Explosions can also occur when liquid slag is being tapped in the slag yard. Thus, the Coordination Supervisor's approval is required for all periods of presence in or near the slag yard.

Liquefied petroleum gas

Liquefied petroleum gas is used at several places in the melt shop. Because of the possibility of leaks, everyone must know and follow the correct procedures. In the event of a leak, the audible and visible alarms go off. At the same time, safety valves shut off the supply of liquefied petroleum gas. On an alarm, all personnel must immediately leave the building and go to one of the melt shop's alarm points. If you are uncertain whether the alarm is for liquefied petroleum gas, always take the safe option and leave the building.

Alarm points

The melt shop has two alarm points, one at the northern end (no. 22) and one at the southern (no. 34). See the map of alarm points at the end of the page.

Carbon monoxide

There is a risk of carbon monoxide exposure at the converter "tower". Owing to the risk of carbon monoxide generation, no work is allowed in the tower during operation. During maintenance, access to the tower may be permitted after consultation with the staff at the converter.

Lime

When working in the converter area and the tower, remember that there is lime dust on the beams and floor. Where work may raise dust, tightly sealing safety goggles and face mask must be worn.

Magnetic fields

There are strong magnetic fields in certain areas of the melt shop. To ensure that no unnecessary risks are taken, people with pacemakers should contact the employer's work environment representative.

Continuous casting

Molten steel

Molten steel is worked and transported within the premises. For this reason, it is forbidden to enter large parts of the operating area during production.

Risk of explosion

Any moisture entering the smelt evaporates, expands to approximately 10 000 times its original volume and can cause explosions. Thus, even during maintenance stops, do not stand or pass close to hot steel.

Liquefied petroleum gas

Liquefied petroleum gas is used at several places in the continuous casting shop. Because of the possibility of leaks, everyone must know and follow the correct procedures. In the event of a leak, the audible and visible alarms go off. At the same time, safety valves shut off the supply of liquefied petroleum gas. On an alarm, all personnel must immediately leave the building and go to one of continuous casting's alarm points. If you are uncertain whether the alarm is for liquefied petroleum gas, always take the safe option and leave the building.

Alarm points

Continuous casting has two alarm points, one at the northern end (no. 34) and one at the eastern end (no. 23). See the map of alarm points at the end of the page.

Magnetic fields

There are strong magnetic fields in certain areas of continuous casting. To ensure that no unnecessary risks are taken, people with pacemakers should contact the employer's work environment representative.

Hot grinding hall

Closed off area

During grinding, or when the grinding discs are rotating, no one is allowed to be in the grinding hall. Personnel are not normally permitted to be in any area where there is a risk of coming into contact with hot materials or hot surfaces.

Alarm point

At the eastern end of the hall, there is alarm point 23. This is to be used as the assembly point for people working in the hot grinding hall. See the map of alarm points at the end of the page. 

Hot slabs

Hot slabs “scatter” annealing scale (600°C) – risk of eye injuries.

Cold grinding hall

Liquefied petroleum gas

Liquefied petroleum gas is used in the cold grinding hall. Because of the possibility of leaks, everyone must know and follow the correct procedures. In the event of a leak, the audible and visible alarms go off. At the same time, safety valves shut off the supply of liquefied petroleum gas. All people must leave the cold grinding hall immediately and go to the alarm point next to the building. If you are uncertain whether the alarm is for liquefied petroleum gas, always take the safe option and leave the building.

Alarm points

At the northern end of the hot coil mill (Varmbandverket), there is alarm point 26. This is also the assembly point for people working in the cold grinding hall. See the map of alarm points at the end of the page.

Disc disintegration

Due to the high centrifugal forces, discs can shatter while grinding slabs. To minimise the risk of being hit by flying fragments, keep away from the grinding area when the machine is in use.

Truck traffic

There is a lot of truck traffic in and around the cold grinding hall. The driver's view from the cab is extremely restricted. Exercise the greatest possible care. Maintain good eye contact with the driver. Use careful judgement.

Hot strip mill

Liquefied petroleum gas

Liquefied petroleum gas is used in the hot strip mill. Because of the possibility of leaks, everyone must know and follow the correct procedures. In the event of a leak, the audible and visible alarms go off. At the same time, safety valves shut off the supply of liquefied petroleum gas. On an alarm, all personnel must immediately leave the building and go to alarm point 26. If you are uncertain whether the alarm is for liquefied petroleum gas, always take the safe option and leave the building. See the map of alarm points at the end of the page.

High-pressure water

During production, water at extremely high pressure is used at the rougher. When working in the vicinity of active production machinery, the high-pressure water supply must be switched off and locked by a qualified operator.

Flying plate scrap

During the rolling of thicknesses less than 3.5mm in the Steckel mill, parts of the plate may detach and be flung into the air. No one is allowed in the vicinity of the mill while the yellow light is flashing.

Cooling baths

To rapidly cool the freshly manufactured coils, there are cooling baths at the eastern corner of the hot coil mill. Take great care when working near the baths. When the water is drained from the baths, there is a risk of slipping. Cordon off the area.

Ammonia

To reduce NOx emissions, ammonia (a 25% water solution) is used at the furnaces. This concentration is not hazardous, but can lead to a reddening of the skin accompanied by a nasty odour.

L76 and Z-high

Automatic overhead travelling cranes

Automatic overhead travelling cranes are used on the annealing and pickling lines. Associated with these are photoelectric trip devices and gates. Both of these have an emergency stop function. When a machine is operating, avoid activating its photoelectric trip device. Breaking the light beam puts the machine in the emergency stop mode. Remember that the machines mentioned here do not have operators and can start without warning. Keep transport/travel routes clean and free from obstruction.

Automated lines

The production line is automatic and starts up without warning. If work has to be carried out in the vicinity of the production line, the line must be disconnected in accordance with the Disconnect and Lock procedure.

Alarm points

There are three alarm points for the annealing and pickling halls – one along the northern side (no. 33), one along the southern side (no. 27) and one along the short eastern side (no. 37). See the map of alarm points at the end of the page.

Hydrofluoric acid

Hydrofluoric acid is used inside the building. In its gaseous form, this acid is extremely corrosive and, even when highly diluted, destroys tissue. Action on contact with hydrofluoric acid:

  • If there is any possibility that hydrofluoric acid has touched your skin, you must spray with hexafluorine until you get to a doctor. Remove all contaminated clothing
  • If the acid gets into your eyes, flush immediately with hexafluorine and continue until you get to a doctor
  • If you inhale the acid, ensure that you get fresh air immediately and then contact an ambulance for a rapid trip to a doctor

Nitric acid

Nitric acid is strongly corrosive – avoid all contact. Similarly, avoid inhaling nitric acid fumes. Use suitable protective equipment. Action on contact with nitric acid:

  • On contact with skin, remove splashed clothes. Sluice the skin with copious amounts of water. Contact a doctor
  • If the acid gets into your eyes, sluice immediately with water for 10 – 15 minutes. Keep your eyes wide open. Get to a hospital as soon as possible
  • On inhalation, fresh air, rest and warmth are essential. Sluice nose, mouth and throat with water. Contact a doctor. Administer oxygen as necessary

Pink card

Anyone working in the buildings must carry the Pink Card. This has information on all the acids used in the buildings. In the event of an accident, this information helps hospital staff to quickly take the correct actions.

Ammonia

To reduce NOx emissions, ammonia (a 25% water solution) is used at the furnaces. This concentration is not hazardous, but can lead to a reddening of the skin accompanied by a nasty odour.

Finishing shop

Auto trucks and travelling overhead cranes

There are automatic cranes and trucks, turnstiles, plastic packing machines and robots at several points in the finishing shop. Associated with these are photoelectric trip devices and gates. Both of these have an emergency stop function. When a machine is operating, avoid activating its photoelectric trip device. Breaking the light beam puts the machine in the emergency stop mode. Remember that the machines mentioned here do not have operators and can start without warning. Keep transport/travel routes free from obstructions.

Automated line

The production line in Finishing is automatic and starts up without warning. If work has to be carried out in the immediate vicinity of the production line, the line must be disconnected in accordance with the Disconnect and Lock procedure.

Alarm points

Next to the western end of Finishing, there is an alarm point (no. 24).

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Terminal

Traffic

The terminal is heavily used by, amongst other things, trucks, lorries and railway wagons. Generally, the view from the cabs of these vehicles is very limited. Thus, even greater care has to be exercised in this area. Maintain good eye contact with the driver. Use careful judgement. Reflective vests, helmet and safety shoes must be worn by all people entering this area.

There is considerable truck traffic at the terminal. Trucks are always to be given right of way.

Never go near to a work vehicle while it is being loaded or unloaded. Tyres can explode.

Read the next chapter: 17. Attend to a knowledge test