|Paver machine tracking isolation switch
Clearing small amounts of material that can be spilled at the front of a paver when a delivery vehicle pulls away, is essential to ensure a consistent, uninterrupted operation which is free from potential defects. Therefore, an operative is required to clear the material from the front of the paving machine. However, from the driving position of the paver, visibility of the space directly in front of the machine can be inhibited, particularly when the ‘wings’ of the receiving hopper are raised after the delivery vehicle has pulled away. The operative is therefore exposed to the potential hazard of the driver moving forward whilst he is working at the front of the machine.
CEMEX Surfacing was the first to develop a system whereby the safety of the workspace in front of the machine is controlled by the individual who is carrying out the work in this area.
Switches have been fitted to all company paving machines on both sides of the receiving hopper, which, when activated, isolate the traction of the paver and prevent any forward movement. This allows the operative to clear any material from the area in front of the receiving hopper and push rollers in a safe environment. Forward movement of the paving machine can only be resumed once the isolation mechanism has been deactivated.
Detailed training for all operatives was carried out covering the improved safe system of work, with regular toolbox talks used to reaffirm the importance of using the system.
Frequent Visible Felt Leadership tours and audits continue to be carried out to assess the effectiveness of all safety features.
Since the introduction of the switches, there have been no incidents or reported near misses involving operatives working in front of the paver. CEMEX Surfacing has actively encouraged the implementation of the isolation switches across the road surfacing industry through the sharing of system details to other contractors via the recently established MPA Safety Forum Working Group – Contract Surfacing’.