The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released their Top 10 Most Cited Violations for 2021. Coming in at number ten on the list is a repeat offender – Machine Guarding. The same violation is also a common recurrence on the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) Top 20 Violations each year. This easily rectified violation accounts for approximately 2,000 citations a year. IAC can help your facility avoid this issue quickly and easily to save you money and keep your employees safe.
“Safety should be top priority. Twenty thousand lives are changed each year just because a machine didn’t have the proper guards,” said Aftermarket Equipment Sales Manager Tony Pray. “It’s totally avoidable if the right precautions are taken.”
Pray said OSHA and MSHA standards have changed standards since the 1970s, so many facilities need new covers or replacement covers for current equipment. Previous standards simply required the conveyor, gears, fan, etc., to be covered by something, but with no specifics on the size of venting, access, or weight tolerance.
“Some were just expanded metal,” Pray said, “And over time, that gets flimsy. You could just push down the guard, so it’s not a physical barrier anymore.”
Pray said IAC has recently helped one customer begin to standardize their machine guards after being cited by OSHA. The original guards made by the equipment manufacturer no longer meet OSHA standards, so IAC has been able to use a standard design principal and then customize guarding for each machine.
“We made solid guards with small holes for venting and visual inspection. No fingers or tools can get through though,” Pray said. “The guard is solid, heavy duty, and robust. The key is keeping it from being easily manipulated or taken from the machine during operation.”
OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910 Subpart O and MSHA Standard 30 CFR 56.14107, 57.14104, 75.1722 and 77.400 cover a majority of machine guarding standards.
If you are in need of new guards, call IAC at 800-334-7431 for a custom design.
For more information on machine guards and how to ensure you're keeping your facility OSHA compliant and your employees safe, check out the following Tip of the Month Video.