A Guide to Machine Safeguarding
How to Contain Hazards and Protect Your Employees
Today, successful industrial guarding requires understanding and applying codes and regulations, assessing risk, validating the safety system and its components, and applying prevailing machine guarding choices. Although many guarding methods and products are available, not all can be applied universally.
Understanding Codes and Regulations
Currently, the general requirements for all machines per OSHA 29 CFR 1910.212 (a) (3) (ii) states that the point of operation of machines whose operation exposes an employee to injury SHALL BE GUARDED.
Facility managers looking to stay on top of the newest regulations can start by conducting a thorough risk assessment. Consider these three questions to get you started:
- Do the safeguards provided meet the minimum OSHA requirements?
- Do the safeguards permit safe, comfortable, and relatively easy operation of the machine?
- Is there a point-of-operation safeguard provided for the machine?
Validating the Safety System
Once the risk assessment is completed and a safety device is applied, it is mandatory to validate the system making sure the device is providing the proper level of safety according to applicable codes and regulations and achieving the desired result.
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