Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Designing Perimeter Fencing

Fixed barrier perimeter fencing is an effective safeguard when designed and installed to meet CSA Z432-04 standards.  When you are installing fixed barrier perimeter guarding take the time to ensure they meet all of the design requirements, including:

  1. Strong enough to withstand operational forces,
  2. Free of sharp edges,
  3. Meet CSA Z432-04 reach requirements (use the chart to determine how size of opening in barrier relates to the distance the barrier must be placed away from the hazard),
  4. Bottom of the barrier is no more than 6” above the ground,
  5. Top of the barrier is no lower than 72” above the ground, and
  6. Must require the use of tools to remove.

Some best practices that we have seen for fixed barrier perimeter systems are clear polycarbonate for the panels.  This is useful when you need to guard against a hazard but still would like the operator to see what’s going on.   If using mesh, the mesh can be painted flat black against the yellow of the posts.  This makes it easier to look through.  Any of these ideas though must still meet the requirement for being strong enough to withstand operational forces.

Our clients often ask us to design and install their fixed barrier perimeter guarding for them but some customers choose to do this on their own as they have their own machine shop with qualified maintenance personnel. If you choose to do this on your own, ensure it will meet the CSA requirements, and please contact us if you have any questions.

 

Posted by Kristin Petaski at 3:59 PM 0 Comments

Monday, March 09, 2015

Daylight Savings Increases Workplace Accidents!

Be aware, as a safety professional this week may be one of your busiest of the year. Research has shown that moving our clocks ahead by one hour results in an average of forty minutes less sleep and causes a noticeable increase in workplace accidents along with traffic accidents and heart attacks. A study by Michigan State University found that there are 5.7% more workplace injuries and 23% more car accidents on the Monday following daylight savings. Not only is there an increase in accidents, but the severity of injuries increases as well. These results are not shown in the fall when we gain an hour.

So, what can we do to combat these effects?

  1. Encourage employees to get extra sleep this week so they can be alert at work.
  2. Try to schedule more hazardous work later in the week.
  3. Increase promotion of safety this week, try to be present on the shop floor and encourage employees to take their time and work safely.
  4. Be very alert while driving to and from work. Be aware of drivers around you, practice defensive driving.
  5. Spend time outside in the sunlight to help your body adjust.
  6. Try to avoid eating heavy meals and avoid caffeine and alcohol.
  7.  BE PROACTIVE IN ELIMIATING HAZARDS. This is a good time to consider the state of your machine safety. Are all hazards safeguarded? Training and awareness may not protect you when you are tired or distracted. Ensure your machine hazards are eliminated or controlled by engineered methods. Call us for advice!

Good luck and stay safe this week!

Posted by Kristin Petaski at 9:46 AM 0 Comments