We recently had an incident at another facility where there was a jam on a machine and the operator could not easily access some of the product jammed in the counter-ejector area through the movable interlock guard. To reach that area they had to remove a fixed position guard.
During clearing of the jam and while working in the unguarded area, the machine started and his little finger was caught by the belt pulling his arm into the machine. He pulled away and the result was a dislocation to his shoulder.
A couple lessons to be learned here:
- Whenever you must remove a guard from a machine, the machine must be in full Lockout.
- Whenever you have a major jam, the machine must be in full Lockout.
- For minor jams and releases, the machine you must utilize the alternative measure of energy safe position to ensure the machine isn’t activated when you are reaching in release the product. This can happen by many ways including accidently tripping photo eyes or switches or having someone else not aware of what you are doing and activate part of the machine.