Office of Environmental Health & Safety
Graham Health Center
408 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester, MI 48309-4452
(248) 370-4196
Fax: (248) 370-4427

Hot Work

Hot Work

A Hot Work Permit is required for any temporary operation that involves open flames or produces heat or sparks. This includes, but is not limited to:
  • Brazing
  • Cutting
  • Grinding
  • Soldering
  • Torching Pipe
  • Torch-Applied Roofing and Welding

View the Hot Work Training Presentation

Requirements of 29 CFR Part 1910 Subpart Q

In its Occupational Safety and Health Standards for General Industry (29 CFR Part 1910 Subpart Q), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has outlined precautions for fire prevention and protection in hot work operations, specifically welding or cutting operations.

Basic Precautions:

  • Fire Hazards - If the object to be welded or cut cannot readily be moved, all movable fire hazards in the vicinity shall be taken to a safe place.
  • Guards - If the object to be welded or cut cannot be moved and if all the fire hazards cannot be removed, guards shall be used to confine the heat, sparks and slag and to protect the immovable fire hazards. 
If the basic precautions cannot be followed, hot work, welding or cutting should NOT BE PERFORMED.

Please contact the Office of Fire Safety at (248) 370-4196 for further assistance.

Special Precautions:

  • Combustible Material - Wherever there are floor openings or cracks in the flooring that cannot be closed, precautions shall be taken so that no readily combustible materials on the floor below will be exposed to sparks that might drop through the floor. The same precautions shall be observed with regard to cracks or holes in walls, open doorways and open or broken windows.
  • Fire Extinguishers - Suitable fire extinguishing equipment shall be maintained in a state of readiness for instant use. Such equipment may consist of pails of water, buckets of sand, hose or portable extinguishers, depending upon the nature and quantity of the combustible material exposed.

Fire Watch
Fire watchers are required whenever hot work, welding or cutting is performed in locations where other than a minor fire might develop or any of the following conditions exist:

  1. Appreciable combustible material is located within 35 feet of the point of operations.
  2. Appreciable combustible material is located more than 35 feet away, but are easily ignited by sparks.
  3. Wall or floor openings within a 35-foot radius expose combustible material located in adjacent areas, including concealed spaces in walls or floors.
  4. Combustible materials are adjacent to the opposite side of metal partitions, walls, ceilings or roofs and are likely to be ignited by conduction or radiation.

Fire Watchers should:

  • Have fire-extinguishing equipment readily available and be trained in its use.
  • Be familiar with facilities for sounding an alarm in the event of a fire.
  • Watch for fire in all exposed areas, try to extinguish only within the capacity of the equipment available, or otherwise sound the alarm.
  • Maintain the "Watch" for at least one half-hour after completion of welding or cutting operations.

Before cutting or welding is permitted, the area shall be inspected by the individual responsible for authorizing cutting and welding operations. This individual will designate precautions to be followed in granting authorization to proceed in the form of a written permit.

Additional Precautions:

  1. Where combustible materials such as paper clippings, wood shavings or textile fibers are on the floor, the floor shall be swept clean for a redius of 35 feet. .
  2. Combustible floors shall be kept wet, covered with damp sand or protected by fire-resistant shields.
  3. Where floors have been wet down, personnel operating welding or cutting equipment shall be protected from possible shock. 

Prohibited Areas
Cutting or welding shall not be permitted in the following situations:

  • In areas not authorized by Oakland University management.
  • In sprinklered buildings where sprinkler protection is impaired.
  • In the presence of explosive atmospheres or explosive atmospheres that may develop.
  • In areas near the storage of large quantities of exposed, readily ignitable materials (i.e. baled paper or cotton).
Fire Detection and Notification Devices
Anyone performing hot work must notify the Office of Fire Safety at (248) 370-4196 if there is any question or concern of activating fire detection and notification devices in the course of completing a job.

Outside Contractors

Outside contractors refer to Information for Contractors for more information relative to performance of hot work on Oakland University's campus.