OSHA Safety Do’s and Don’ts for Operating Metalworking Machinery

OSHA Safety Do’s and Don’ts for Operating Metalworking Machinery

OSHA Safety Do’s and Don’ts for Operating Metalworking Machinery – Wrong use of metalwork machinery is one of the common causes of workplace crush injuries, fractures to the hands, arms and fingers, and amputations.

A List No Operation Should Take for Granted

OSHA has recommended a comprehensive set of do’s and don’ts to reduce the risk of metalworking accidents. Employers need to ensure that these do’s and don’ts are diligently implemented for the safety of machine workers.

Do’s for Safely Using Metalworking Machinery 

  • Ensure that the machine guards are in position and fully functional before operating.
  • Check and adjust the safety devices before a metalworking job.
  • Ensure the machinery has a start/stop button that is easily accessible to the operator.
  • Ensure all the stationary equipment has been securely anchored to the floor. Loose bolts or weak nuts which are needed to secure equipment to the ground cannot be tolerated. This issue needs to be focused on and handled before the operation can continue.
  • Each metalworking machine should be operated only by one worker at a time, but all workers should know how to stop it in an emergency.
  • Ensure all the cutting blades and tools are sharp and clean. The tools should cut freely without applying force. This can also help the operation because it will be easier for the operator to complete their tasks. This is better for the operation in a number of ways.
  • Ensure that adjust wrenches and keys have been removed from the equipment before switching on the power.
  • Before cleaning, measuring or making adjustments to the machine, ensure that the power is turned off.
  • Remove sharp metal cuttings with a brush, vacuum or rake, but not with hand.
  • Avoid awkward hand positions and operations. A sudden slip can cause the hand to engage with the cutting blade or tool.
  • Keep hands away from all moving parts and the cutting head.
  • Clean every tool after use.
  • Return the portable tools to their secure storage place after use.
  • Ensure the floors are level and non-slippery.
  • Ensure there is adequate space around the machinery to perform the job safely.
  • Recognize the fire and health hazards from different materials, and take appropriate precautions.
  • Clean the machine, hoods, ducts and other sites if combustible metal dust is a possibility (as it can pose a risk of explosion).
  • Obtain first aid right away for all injuries.

Don’ts for Safely Using Metalworking Equipment

  • Don’t wear loose clothes, gloves, ties, bracelets, rings or other accessories that could entangle with moving parts. Tie flowing hair.
  • Don’t distract a metalworking machine operator. Horseplay should be prohibited as it can lead to serious injuries. People don’t need to act like robots but acting like someone is a receiver in football and they are catching something in the midst of dangerous machinery and moving objects, for instance, is out of bounds.
  • Don’t remove metal cuttings until the machine has stopped.
  • Don’t leave a metalworking machine running unattended.
  • Don’t clean your hands with cutting fluid.
  • Don’t free a stalled cutter unless you have first turned off the power.
  • Don’t use any rags near the moving parts of the equipment.
  • Don’t use compressed air to blow out debris from the machinery or to remove dirt from clothing.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Metalworking

Always use appropriate PPE for the metalworking job. Wear certified goggles or safety glasses with side shields. Prescription eyeglasses are not a safe substitute. Wear safety footwear and respiratory protection as necessary. If the machine’s noise level is high, wear hearing protection as required.

Watch YouTube Video: Welding & Metalworking Safety 101. What You Need to Know to Stay Safe. This video provides basic tips on how to stay safe while working with welding and metalworking machinery.

Machine Accident Lawyers in Sacramento

I’m Ed Smith, a machine accident lawyer in Sacramento. Metalwork machine accidents can cause serious injuries and even death. If you or someone you know has been injured at work, call me for a free consultation at 916-584-9355.

In my 36-year career as a personal injury lawyer, I’ve helped numerous Sacramento residents and other Northern Californians in getting the compensation they deserve.

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