Getting Caught

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Have you ever tried to rip an old towel into rags and after straining without success, had to go looking for scissors? You've just witnessed a safe demonstration of the strength of some of today's fabrics.

But thousands of workers aren't so lucky. Those who have gotten clothing caught in moving parts of a machine know that even if they had the strength to rip the material free, they never would have had time to prevent injury to themselves. Your hand can be pulled around a pulley in a fraction of a second.

Loose clothing, ties, jewelry and even human hair have become caught in machinery and caused horrific, often fatal injuries like these:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 189 workers in the United States died in 1997 after becoming caught in running equipment. The greatest toll occurred in the manufacturing industry.

Here are some tips for those working around equipment capable of entrapping parts of their bodies:

Anyone working around machinery needs to be properly trained about the potential hazards and what to do if a safeguard is missing, damaged or doesn't provide enough protection. They must also wear personal protective equipment such as goggles to prevent injuries from items such as flying wood and metal fragments or splashed fluids.

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