Rotating motion can be dangerous; even smooth, slowly rotating shafts can grip hair and clothing, and through minor contact force the hand and arm into a dangerous position. Injuries due to contact with rotating parts can be severe. Collars, couplings, cams, clutches, flywheels, shaft ends, spindles, meshing gears, and horizontal or vertical shafting are some examples of common rotating mechanisms which may be hazardous. The danger increases when projections such as set screws, bolts, nicks, abrasions, and projecting keys or set screws are exposed on rotating parts.
In-running nip point hazards are caused by the rotating parts on machinery. There are three main types of in-running nips. Parts can rotate in opposite directions while their axes are parallel to each other. These parts may be in contact (producing a nip point) or in close proximity. In the latter case, stock fed between two rolls produces a nip point. As seen here, this danger is common on machines with intermeshing gears, rolling mills, and calendars. Hazards are caused by the rotating parts on machinery. There are three main types of in-running nips. Parts can rotate in opposite directions while their axes are parallel to each other. These parts may be in contact (producing a nip point) or in close proximity. In the latter case, stock fed between two rolls produces a nip point. As seen here, this danger is common on machines with intermeshing gears, rolling mills, and calendars.
Nip points are also created between rotating and tangentially moving parts. Some examples would be: the point of contact between a power transmission belt and its pulley, a chain and a sprocket, and a rack and pinion.
Nip points can occur between rotating and fixed parts which create a shearing, crushing, or abrading action. Examples are: spoked handwheels or flywheels, screw conveyors, or the periphery of an abrasive wheel and an incorrectly adjusted work rest and tongue.
Reciprocating motions may be hazardous because, during the back-and-forth or up-and-down motion, a worker may be struck by or caught between a moving and a stationary part.
Transverse motion (movement in straight, continuous line) creates a hazard because a worker may be struck or caught in a pinch or shear point by the moving part.
Cutting action may involve rotating, reciprocating, or transverse motion. The danger of cutting action exists at the point of operation where finger, arm and body injuries can occur and where flying chips or scrap material can strike the head, particularly in the area of the eyes or face. Such hazards are present at the point of operation in cutting wood, metal, and other materials. Examples of mechanisms involving cutting hazards include bandsaws, circular saws, boring and drilling machines, turning machines (lathes), or milling machines.
Punching action results when power is applied to a slide (ram) for the purpose of blanking, drawing, or stamping metal or other materials. The danger of this type of action occurs at the point of operation where stock is inserted, held, and withdrawn by hand. Typical machines used for punching operations are power presses and iron workers.
Shearing action involves applying power to a slide or knife in order to trim or shear metal or other materials. A hazard occurs at the point of operation where stock is actually inserted, held, and withdrawn. Examples of machines used for shearing operations are mechanically, hydraulically, or pneumatically powered shears.
Bending action results when power is applied to a slide in order to draw or stamp metal or other materials. A hazard occurs at the point of operation where stock is inserted, held, and withdrawn. Equipment that uses bending action includes power presses, press brakes, and tubing benders.
Safeguards must meet these minimum general requirements:
This kind of safety training is necessary for new operators and maintenance or setup personnel, when any new or altered safeguards are put in service, or when workers are assigned to a new machine or operation.
While these aids do not give complete protection from machine hazards, they may provide the operator with an extra margin of safety. Sound judgment is needed in their application and usage. Examples of possible application include the following:
Today many builders of single-purpose machines provide point-of-operation and power transmission safeguards as standard equipment. However, not all machines in use have built-in safeguards provided by the manufacturer. Guards designed and installed by the builder offer two main advantages:
User-built guards are sometimes necessary for a variety of reasons. They have these advantages:
User-built guard disadvantages:
Many feeding and ejection methods do not require the operator to place his or her hands in the danger area. In some cases, no operator involvement is necessary after the machine is set up. In other situations, operators can manually feed the stock with the assistance of a feeding mechanism. Properly designed ejection methods do not require any operator involvement after the machine starts to function. Using these feeding and ejection methods does not eliminate the need for guards and devices. Guards and devices must be used wherever they are necessary and possible in order to provide protection from exposure to hazards. Types of feeding and ejection methods:
Good maintenance and repair procedures contribute significantly to the safety of the maintenance crew as well as that of machine operators. The variety and complexity of machines to be serviced, the hazards associated with their power sources, the special dangers that may be present during machine breakdown, and the severe time constraints often placed on maintenance personnel all make safe maintenance and repair work difficult. If possible, machine design should permit routine lubrication and adjustment without removal of safeguards. But when safeguards must be removed, and the machine serviced, the lockout procedure of 29 CFR 1910.147 must be adhered to. The maintenance and repair crew must never fail to replace the guards before the job is considered finished and the machine released from lockout. In order to prevent hazards while servicing machines, each machine or piece of equipment should be safeguarded during the conduct of servicing or maintenance by:
Although this is the general rule, there are exceptions when the servicing or maintenance is not hazardous for an employee, when the servicing which is conducted is minor in nature, done as an integral part of production, and the employer utilizes alternative safeguards which provide effective protection as is required by 29 CFR 1910.212 or other specific standards. When the servicing or maintenance is completed, there are specific steps which must be taken to return the machine or piece of equipment to service. These steps include:
If it is necessary to oil machine parts while the machine is running, special safeguarding equipment may be needed solely to protect the oiler from exposure to hazardous moving parts. Maintenance personnel must know which machines can be serviced while running and which can not. The danger of accident or injury is greatly reduced by shutting off and locking out all sources of energy.
Copyright ©2000-2019 Geigle Safety Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Federal copyright prohibits unauthorized reproduction by any means without permission. Disclaimer: This material is for training purposes only to inform the reader of occupational safety and health best practices and general compliance requirement and is not a substitute for provisions of the OSH Act of 1970 or any governmental regulatory agency. CertiSafety is a division of Geigle Safety Group, Inc., and is not connected or affiliated with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).