Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Seeks Updated Safety Standards Regarding Faulty Equipment in the Workplace
More often than not, machine accidents are caused by either a lack of guards, barriers, and gates or by the removal of safety devices. These accidents can lead to amputations or even fatal injuries. While employers must do their due diligence by keeping their workers safe, many times the injuries are caused by faulty or incomplete equipment in the workplace.
Changing safety standards for workplace equipment
Many different types of workplaces have equipment that can, under certain circumstances, cause injury.
For example, consider the mechanical power press, a machine that shears, punches forms, or assembles metal.
From 2007 through 2015, this piece of equipment alone resulted in approximately 388 injuries (about 43 per year), most of which were amputations. Due to this high number of machine accidents, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is seeking to update safety standards relating to power presses.
The current standard excludes certain types of power presses, therefore allowing lenient safety requirements related to those specific machines. Workers using those machines are at greater risk for injuries as the safety mandates as written may not currently apply. OSHA encourages manufacturers to provide feedback and revisit safety options in the hopes of keeping workers and employees safe from faulty workplace equipment.
If you are interested in reading about OSHA’s inquiry to update its standard, please visit https://www.osha.gov/laws-regs/federalregister/2021-07-28.