Chromium and Nickel in Welding Fume

Chromium, including hexavalent chromium, and nickel, may be found in fumes produced from welding processes.
The material being welded and the type of process being used will affect specific compounds and concentrations found in welding fumes.

Acute Effects of Overexposure to Welding Fumes That Contain Chromium and Nickel

Chromium and nickel may result in effects similar to fumes developed by other metals.

  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Respiratory Irritation

  • Some people may develop a sensitivity to chromium or nickel which can result in dermatitis or skin rash.

    Chronic Effects of Exposure to Fumes Containing Chromium and Nickel

    Conclusions from NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) have said that some forms of hexavalent chromium and nickel, along with their inorganic compounds should be considered cancer-causing agents. Definite effects have not yet been determined.

    How to Protect Against Overexposure

  • Do not breathe fumes and gases. Keep your head out of the fumes.
  • Use enough ventilation or exhaust at the arc or both to keep fumes and gases from your breathing zone and general area.
  • If ventilation is questionable, use air sampling to determine the need for corrective measures.
  • Keep exposure as low as possible.

  • Resource: AWS Health and Fact Sheet No. 4 - Chromium and Nickel in Welding Fume