Industrial workplaces can be dangerous if you haven’t implemented the right safety procedures and equipment. Ensure your employees have access to the following gear to keep them safe around hazardous machinery.
- Light curtains
Safety light curtains are optoelectronic devices that protect people from the dangers of working around hazardous machinery. They’re also known as safety light barriers, perimeters, or screens.
These critical devices work by detecting movement within a given area—such as the immediate space around a piece of hazardous equipment or machinery. When a person enters this area, the light curtain triggers an alarm or machine shutoff, preventing a potential accident.
You’ll find light curtains in many different industries, including food and beverage, automotive, pharmaceutical, chemical and petrochemical, oil and gas exploration and production, nuclear power generation plants, and many more.
- Lockout/tagout systems
Lockout-tagout is a safety procedure designed to prevent accidents by locking out hazardous energy sources and tagging them with warning signs.
These systems are critical to industries like construction, manufacturing, utilities, mining, and maintenance, ensuring dangerous machinery is not started up or operated until the person performing the job has first locked out the energy source and tagged it with a warning sign.
- Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)
Personal Protective Equipment, or PPE, is vital in industries ranging from pharmaceuticals to automotive mechanics. There are three main categories of PPE:
- General-purpose PPE
- Special-purpose PPE
- Occupational clothing
When working around hazardous machinery, PPE such as gloves, goggles, and helmets are critical for preventing accidents. Employees should also avoid wearing loose clothing that can catch or snag on a piece of equipment.
- Emergency stop buttons
An emergency stop button is an indispensable feature that should be present in any workplace with hazardous machinery. Installed on or near a machine, these buttons allow workers to instantly stop and shut down a machine in an emergency.
When someone presses the button and the machine shuts down, workers can quickly get out of harm’s way and seek medical attention if necessary, preventing serious injury or death.
- Interlock and safety door switches
Interlock safety door switches keep people safe when they’re close to hazardous machinery. They’re one of the most common safety systems in the modern workplace.
These systems have two main components—a sensor and a controller. The sensor detects when the machine’s door is open and sends an alarm to the controller, which responds by stopping the machine from running until it’s safe to do so.
You can use interlock systems with any type of machinery with a door a worker must open before a machine can turn on. These systems offer a range of benefits, including minimised downtime, reduced workplace accidents, and constant safety monitoring.
Stay safe with the right gear
Investing in quality safety gear is the first step to creating a secure and shielded workplace. With the above gear in tow—and the right procedures and practices in place—you’ll have a productive working environment where employees feel safe, comfortable and ready to get the job done!