Safety Procedures when Charging Batteries
We would also like to share some general safety suggestions when charging batteries:
- Always secure a battery prior to moving or exchanging it. This normally is accomplished using manual stops and/or powered rollers on the battery changer to prevent the battery from falling off the changer.
- Chargers should be robustly mounted to a permanent fixing.
- Chargers should be connected with a suitable lockable isolator/breaker that is compatible with the charger.
- The charger should be installed to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
- Full-service access should be allowed for the trucks, batteries and chargers – taking note of all necessary access points.
When working with acid electrolyte:
- Ensure neutralising solutions are available for immediate use
- Add concentrated acid slowly and carefully to the water (adding water to acid causes violent heat generation)
- Stir the mixture with a glass or plastic (Teflon) rod
- Ensure stored electrolyte is decanted into an appropriate container (eg glass or polyethylene or polypropylene container or a polyline drum)
- Do not allow metal (except lead) to come in contact with acid or electrolyte
- Allow the electrolyte to cool before checking its specific gravity
- Allow the electrolyte to cool before filling batteries.
Safe Practices and Training
It should be required that all those involved in the process of charging of batteries receive adequate training on safety procedures. The employer is responsible for providing appropriate information and training to employees. Safe work practice requirements should be followed at all times!
Safety training should include:
- Operator and changer responsibilities,
- Required procedures/job tasks,
- Inspection requirements,
- Care and storage of personal protective equipment, and
- Safe work practices.
Remember to review the job task of who is responsible for properly removing and replacing the battery retention plate and when. This activity is critical to preventing battery ejections.