U.S. Department of Labor
Process: Surface Preparation and Preservation
Spray Painting: Case History (Eye Injuries)
While preparing to spray a compartment, a tender poured paint into the paint pot, while the sprayer stood by. An air line was attached to the paint pot and pressurized to 80 psi. Once pressure was applied to the spray hose and gun, the spray hose immediately ruptured at the coupling connection, causing the paint to discharge into the faces of the tender and the sprayer. The tender immediately removed his safety glasses and rinsed his eyes with an on-site eye wash bottle. The sprayer was wearing a full face respirator and, therefore, no paint came into contact with his skin or eyes.
Paint pot with ruptured hose.
Sprayed goggles and full face respirator as a result of ruptured paint hose.
Analysis and Preventive Measures
Serious injury was prevented because both workers had donned their protective equipment prior to starting the job. It is important that protective equipment fits properly, such as tight-fitting goggles, to provide greater protection to workers. Maintaining an eye wash bottle (or designated eyewash station) at the job site was immediately useful to the tender, and is required by OSHA 29 CFR 1915.87(e). However, proper examination of the paint hose and its connections before use, as required by OSHA, would have identified that the hose required replacement (29 CFR 1915.131(h)), preventing its use, rupture and the inadvertent discharge of paint on the tender and the sprayer.