30 CFR § 250.113 - What procedures must I follow when welding?

§ 250.113 What procedures must I follow when welding?

(a) Before you weld, you must move any equipment containing hydrocarbons or other flammable substances at least 35 feet horizontally from the welding area. You must move similar equipment on lower decks at least 35 feet from the point of impact where slag, sparks, or other burning materials could fall. If moving this equipment is impractical, you must protect that equipment with flame-proofed covers, shield it with metal or fire-resistant guards or curtains, or render the flammable substances inert.

(b) While you weld, you must monitor all water-discharge-point sources from hydrocarbon-handling vessels. If a discharge of flammable fluids occurs, you must stop welding.

(c) If you cannot weld in one of the designated safe-welding areas that you listed in your safe welding plan, you must meet the following requirements:

(1) You may not begin welding until:

(i) The welding supervisor or designated person in charge advises in writing that it is safe to weld.

(ii) You and the designated person in charge inspect the work area and areas below it for potential fire and explosion hazards.

(2) During welding, the person in charge must designate one or more persons as a fire watch. The fire watch must:

(i) Have no other duties while actual welding is in progress;

(ii) Have usable firefighting equipment;

(iii) Remain on duty for 30 minutes after welding activities end; and

(iv) Maintain a continuous surveillance with a portable gas detector during the welding and burning operation if welding occurs in an area not equipped with a gas detector.

(3) You may not weld piping, containers, tanks, or other vessels that have contained a flammable substance unless you have rendered the contents inert and the designated person in charge has determined it is safe to weld. This does not apply to approved hot taps.

(4) You may not weld within 10 feet of a wellbay unless you have shut in all producing wells in that wellbay.

(5) You may not weld within 10 feet of a production area, unless you have shut in that production area.

(6) You may not weld while you drill, complete, workover, or conduct wireline operations unless:

(i) The fluids in the well (being drilled, completed, worked over, or having wireline operations conducted) are noncombustible; and

(ii) You have precluded the entry of formation hydrocarbons into the wellbore by either mechanical means or a positive overbalance toward the formation.