First and foremost, manufacturing safety is important because protecting employees should always be a top priority. But a safe manufacturing plant also reaps financial benefits, both directly and indirectly. The financial and operational payoffs to ensuring plant safety are noteworthy. They include, a reduction in lost work days, improved company morale, avoiding hefty fines, fewer schedule interruptions, and increased productivity, to name a few. Safety can actually be a competitive advantage! While the benefits are clear – the big question is HOW can you ensure a manufacturing safety? Here are a few tips:
Engage Employees in Safety Goals
Safety is both a corporate and individual responsibility. Making safety a core value and incentivizing diligence can lead to a reduction in accidents and help identify risks before an issue arises. Develop a safety mindset from the top down, educate employees, and a reduction in accidents is inevitable.
Strategic Guarding Enclosures
We all know moving machine parts have the potential to cause injury. Machine guarding is an important precautionary safety measure. However, before installing guarding, it’s important to understand how employees interact with equipment so it’s not guarded to the point at which it’s unusable. In that instance, employees may adapt the guarding or remove it all together in order to effectively do their job.
Leave it to the Experts
Machinery adjustments are occasionally necessary but should never be undertaken by employees who are not specifically trained in the technical aspects of the equipment. When in doubt, call in the manufacturer.
Eliminate Obstacles from Walkways
Injuries can result from trips caused by clutter. Maintaining clean and orderly traffic areas is the best way to avoid these injuries. This means instilling cleaning procedures and allotting adequate time devoted specifically to cleaning - particularly where waste is a by-product of regular operations.
Machinery that is not properly maintained becomes extremely dangerous and can be prone to malfunction. Regularly scheduled maintenance goes a long way towards ensuring equipment is running smoothly and safely. For conveyors, feel free to use our Conveyor Maintenance Checklist. Additionally, the employees who interact with the machinery should be exceedingly familiar with how the machine runs when it’s working properly. Any deviation should be swiftly reported and acted upon.
Use a Safety Checklist
We recommend OSHA’s Safety checklist, which can be found here: https://www.rit.edu/~w-outrea/OSHA/documents/Module2/M2_SelfChcklst.pdf