A plant operator caught the tip of his finger whilst replacing the slipper on the ridge plant extruder during a changeover procedure. The subsequent incident investigation also identified manual handling risks associated with moving the 35kg slippers from the storage table to the point of use.
To eliminate both hazards an overhead beam together with a trolley fitted with an electrical winch were installed. The weight of the slipper was fully supported by the winch whilst it was moved into position. A handle was attached to the slipper, to aid finer positioning during installation, and lifting eyes to simplify connecting to the winch cable. A storage table for the slippers with lockable wheels was also introduced, the table can be moved along in line with the with beam.
The system was successfully trialled in a controlled environment before introducing to plant operators. A video was used to help train operators on the correct installation procedures and a new risk assessment was prepared for the task.
- Removed the hazards associated with this maintenance task
- Project demonstrated management’s commitment to improving safety
- Maintenance operators like the new, user friendly system
- Employees engaged in finding solution – enhances safety culture
- More efficient and easier process
- A safer working environment for all.