Submitted by Steve Winicker.
LAST WEEKENDS SHOP ACTIVITY
With the Santa Train wrapped up shop activities are returning to normal. Work is ongoing on the rail washer issues. After cleaning and inspection John Jaress discovered that the disk inside the valve was fractured. The valve will need to be replaced. The firebox door was removed, and it was found that one of the two supporting studs had broken off as we suspected. Work on getting a new stud made is underway. Oil samples were taken from the driver axle bearings. These will be taken in for analysis this coming week. If the oil looks good, we will be topping off the boxes and putting new safety wire in the plugs. If the oil shows contaminates, we will have to change the oil in the bearings before putting in the plugs. Jeff Rayner drilled out the plugs in the staybolts.
The next big job is clearing the flues of cinders and debris followed by cleaning out the smoke box of cinders and soot. Hopefully we will be able to do this next weekend.
Pressure washers are extremely useful to clean equipment, materials and work areas. At home, they may be used for washing automobiles, house exteriors, decks.
They can also cause significant injuries. Because the water is under pressure, it moves with enough momentum to cause damage to the eyes or skin and contribute to other types of injuries. Direct contact with a pressure washer’s flow to your skin can abrade away the skin layer by layer rather than cuts and causes injuries that are hard to heal and can scar for life.
For safer use of a pressure washer, follow these tips:
- Wear eye and hearing protection as well as gloves when you use a pressure washer.
- Avoid contact with the high-pressure stream of water. Keep your hands, feet and body out of the way.
- Always wear good footwear and clothing (preferably long pants and shirts with long sleeves) when using a pressure washer.
- To keep control of the water stream, hang on to the spray wand with both hands.
- Never point the sprayer at another person, whether the pressure washer is operating or not. It could discharge unexpectedly.
- Maintain good footing. Do not reach so far that you lose your balance.
- Do not let children use a pressure washer or be in close proximity to where a pressure washer is being used.
- Do not use a pressure washer in an area where the water could contact electrical equipment.
Pressure washers can get the job done quickly and effectively. But they have the potential for causing significant injury, so use them safely at the Shop and at home.