Recently, a factory worker was caught in a timber pallet-assembly machine in St Marys, sustaining fatal injuries.
Sadly, every year, thousands of workers in NSW who use machinery suffer horrific and life-changing injuries. Issues often relate to:
- Lack of controlling risks at the design stage
- Lack of maintenance
- Lack of training
These and the improper use of machinery are the frequent causes of fatalities, amputations, manual handling injuries, crush injuries, burns and fractures to the fingers, hands and arms. But all these injuries are preventable!
Ask yourself ‘Could the people around me or can I get injured when operating the machine?’
COMMON EXAMPLES OF IMPROPER USE
You are at a greater risk of injury if the machine is not being used properly, for example:
- Using machines with missing or inadequate guards, for example, to speed up production.
- Guard interlocks are overridden or missing allowing the guard to remain open while the machine is still moving.
- Doing cleaning or maintenance work without following the procedures for isolation and lock-out.
- Doing inspection or maintenance work without locking or supporting items that can move unexpectedly, for example; due to loss of pressure.
- Safety controls are misused. For example, emergency stop buttons being used to start and stop machines.
WHAT WE NEED YOU TO DO
If you believe that you or other workers could be injured when working with machines at your workplace:
- Report your concern or the known hazard to your employer or supervisor immediately.
- Speak with your employer if you are unsure of how to safely operate a machine.
- Participate in the hazard identification resolution process and make suggestions for actions.
If you have any concerns with any of the machines in your workplace currently and would like assistance getting these issues sorted? Let’s Talk!