Long Hair, Loose Clothing, and Hazardous Equipment: A Deadly Combination

October 12, 2011 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

Entanglement Hazards

Entanglement hazards receive the greatest publicity in the agricultural industry, where nearly 4 in 10 injuries are entanglement related. However, employees operating or working around equipment in industrial settings are also at risk.
Machines and equipment can pose an entanglement hazard if they have:
• Pinch points, where two or more parts move together, and one of them is moving in a circle (pulley and belt systems, including conveyors and the escalator that killed Michael Smith fall into this category).
• Crush points, where two components move toward each other, as happens in three-point hitches and hydraulic cylinders.
• Wrap points, created by exposed rotating components

Preventing Entanglements

Safeguards that can prevent these kinds of deadly accidents include:
• Guarding. Moving parts on machinery should be guarded to prevent any part of the worker’s body from contacting the machine’s moving parts.
• Dress codes. Workers should not wear loose-fitting clothing, chains, or other loose jewelry around equipment that poses an entanglement hazard. Long hair should be tied back to keep it safely out of danger.
• Safe work practices. Workers should not work alone with potentially entangling machinery. Before performing adjustments or maintenance operations, qualified workers should shut down and lockout equipment.

Emergency shutoffs. Workers who work with or around machinery should know where to find and how to operate emergency shutoffs. When a worker becomes entangled, a quick response may save a life.

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