Various Guarding Alternatives for Conveyor Belt Owners
When people meet machines in the workplace, only one thing comes to mind, safety! Conveyor belts are examples of machines that can lead to severe accidents and life threatening situations. It is thus imperative to handle them with care and take the necessary steps in ensuring that all your employees are safe when working. To begin with, make sure that all your employees are aware of the risks involved when using conveyor belts. If you just added them to your facility, organise proper training for your employees to enlighten them on the precautions they should take when operating the machines. Additionally, install conveyor guarding to mitigate the risk of accidents in the workplace. Here are the various guarding alternatives you can use:
Distance guards are necessary for reinforcing a safe operating distance between the worker and the conveyor belt. They guarantee that the worker will not fall victim to an oversight and get dangerously close to the conveyor belt amid the operations. Ideally, distance guards come with a construction similar to that of a fence, preventing direct accidental access to a danger zone or nip point on the conveyor belt. These guards are firmly secured in place using interlocking devices to regulate access.
Skirting guards enhance safety in places where a moving nip point comes into contact with an idler. This creates a case where a worker can be pulled into the area between the idler and the moving belt, leading to an injury. Skirting guards are, therefore, installed to mitigate this risk by extending well beyond the outrunning, hazardous nip point up to a certain distance deemed safe for the worker to operate freely. The skirting guard limits access to the nip point. Should there be access, then the employee will be apprehensive of the danger involved.
Emergency Stop Buttons
Emergency stop buttons are another option you can go for when looking to enhance safety in your workplace. As their name alludes, their purpose is to bring everything to a standstill in case of an emergency. They are helpful in mitigating the severity of an accident by stopping the motion of the belt and allowing employees to respond accordingly. Emergency stop buttons should be easily accessible and marked boldly in red so that employees can locate them easily. Additionally, you should test them regularly to make sure that they are functional and reliable on any day they are needed.