Monday, September 19, 2016

Why Change is Important


playground equipment

I was scrolling though Facebook last week and came across this image. My first reaction was a combination of laughter and disbelief. Can any of you imagine allowing your children to play on a structure like this? We go to so many lengths to protect our children, constantly researching ways to make everyday activities safer for them. And in that strive for constant improvement, the play structures of today are drastically different due to added safety features and elimination and control of hazards. While we have definitely made them safer, do you think kids today have less fun on these play structures? I doubt it. In fact, I might even argue that we have improved the fun-factor by adding new and unique features.

So….why can’t we apply the same thinking to machine safety? We often hear “I’ve been doing it this way for years, why do we have to change it now?”. If we use that same logic for our children’s activities how many more serious injuries would we see? Instead, why don’t we all work together to improve the safety of our equipment, not only for ourselves but for our children when they enter the workforce. When we all work together in a positive way to improve the safety in our work environment, I bet we will find even better ways to accomplish the same goals. And perhaps years down the road when we see an image of an old machine we can also look at it in disbelief instead of thinking that it is normal.

Posted by Kristin Petaski at 2:59 PM 0 Comments

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Do You Have Unstable Equipment?


Have you ever noticed a machine that seemed like it might topple over if bumped or a machine that moved unexpectedly during operation? Have you thought to yourself “this can’t be safe” but were unsure if it specifically violated any safety standards? Well you would be right, a machine that is unstable presents unnecessary hazards in the workplace and would not be in compliance with CSA Standard Z432-04: Safeguarding of Machinery.

CSA Standard Z432-04: Safeguarding of Machinery Section states that machines must be designed to be stable so that they cannot tip or roll over. Factors to consider in the stability of a machine include geometry of the base, weight distribution, dynamic forces, vibration and external forces. If special provisions must be taken to ensure the stability of a piece of equipment, the manufacturer is required to include a warning on the machine or in the machine’s manual.

Stability is often well thought out for operation of the machine, but CSA states that stability must be considered in all phases of the machine’s life cycle which includes transportation, installation and dismantling. These other life stages of a machine are often overlooked and serious injuries can occur. So next time you notice a machine that looks unstable, be proactive and ensure that it is rectified before someone gets hurt.


Posted by Kristin Petaski at 2:07 PM 0 Comments
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