Assembling-multi-tap-distribution manifolds for street-side use | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Assembling-multi-tap-distribution manifolds for street-side use

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Assembling-multi-tap-distribution manifolds for street-side use

Water distribution to housing estates and squatter areas


From the Hong Kong Government's Year Book -1963

Date picture taken (may be approximate): 
Wednesday, May 15, 1963


1963 Water Rationing
1963 Water Rationing, by Moddsey

Greetings.  This photo of a man doing arc welding reminds me of one frightening experience from my boyish years (1956 to be precise).  My neighbours at street level operated a bicycle shop but arc welding was their main business.  Never aware of the hazards, I spent about 15 minutes talking with my friend the welder and watching his work on and off.  During the entire period, there was no pain not even a discomfort.  Two days later, the pain on the eyes became unbearable and it was impossible to open my eyelids as everything before me looked as if I was looking at the sun.

Luck was on my side.  A relative knew a little bit about Chinese medicine.  She applied some fluid to my eyes, then wipe-cleaned it with her tongue - this repeated two dozen times.  I am forever thankful for what she did for me.  If any reader knows about this medical practice, I would like to learn about it.  My full vision returned about two weeks later.

Advise your children to never look at arc welding.  Regards,  Peter   

Street-side open frontage workshops and  pavement workshops still have electric arc welding going on without any warnings to passing pedestrians to shield their eyes.

The arc welding process can also affect the skin which is why professional welders should use full frontal leather aprons and arm sleeves etc as well as face shields

Greetings, and thank you IDJ for the feedback.  Children are curious, and likely more so when they see their friends and neighbours working.  I may never know whether, and to what degree, the treatment has worked, this is secondary.  The memory of someone who made a caring effort to help is always cherished.  Regards,  Peter   

Hi Oldtimer,

To be honest, the treatment you received did more harm than good. The injury was due to microscopic UV burns to your cornea to the retina. Licking it would introduce a lot of bacteria into the wounds if the eyeballs rather than the eyelids were licked. Proper treatment would be to apply antibiotic cream and eye patches. Sparks landing in the eye can do a lot more damage.

Thank you tkjho for the advice.  That was many years ago when my elders had very little knowedge and educatiion.  Looking back, the welder should have stopped me watching his work.  At the age I am now at, I am lucky.  Regards,  Peter