Machine guarding is basically protecting certain parts of the machinery that have the potential to cause serious injuries to the workers. Machine safety guards reduce the chances of accidents caused by human error, mechanical or electrical failure, or poor design. Here, we shall discuss why machine safety guards are required in any machinery-based environment.
There should at least be one type of guarding mechanism in place for every piece of machinery. The following are some of the important reasons for guarding:
- Provides protection against the parts of the machine that can cause injury.
- Secures the machinery to avoid manipulation or temperance of certain parts.
- Protects the machines and surrounding environment from falling debris or other harmful substances that can cause injury.
- Avoids chances of injury by securing the sharp parts of a machine.
- Allows workers to use the machines without worrying or interfering with production efficiency.
According to Work Safe, the following are the hazardous parts of machines that are likely to cause an injury:
- Any rotating shafting, gearing, cable, chain, fan blade.
- The run-on point of any belt, chain, or cable.
- Any crushing or sheering points, ground wheels and track gear.
- Rotating knives, blades, or other similar parts.
- Any component of a machine that is used for cutting, grinding, crushing, or breaking.
- Hot or freezing parts of a machine.
Types of Guarding
According to Safe Works, the following are some of the most basic machine guards:
Fixed guards are produced as a permanent part of the machinery. They are strong and should not be removed or tampered with.
These guards are designed to stop or pause the machine operations when they are removed, unlocked, or raised.
This guard is used when the machine requires adjustment as well as protection while being operated. For example, workers might need to move or raise a certain part of the machine. The guard can be manually adjusted by the worker according to the requirements.
These are automatic guards that adjust on their own for moving machines, such as trimming machines.
Machine guarding should be inspected frequently to ensure that every piece of equipment is securely protected. Also, workers should be fully trained on the use and importance of machine guards to avoid unfortunate incidents. In case any of the machine safety guards break or crack, they should be removed and replaced or fixed immediately. For more information on machine guarding, please contact Total Control Electrical today.