Companies have a huge responsibility to make sure their employees are safe in the workplace. Safety and Maintenance professionals across America are plagued with the decisions between do I fixate on price or realize the value in “the solution”. Product companies can make a compelling argument, but companies can often get caught in the trap of being sold the wrong thing due to lack of info.
Time…there is a tricky word. Is there a grand illusion we can complete all tasks in a timely manner due to the assumption we have all the information to make the right decision? And how is “timely” measured? Is there a level of delusion thinking it will not take too long, when in reality projects typically breed more attention than originally expected? In reality, we are all busy with our primary job functions. When time is not considered in the value formula, you may end up with products from a supplier on your shelf collecting dust, potentially getting damaged, and not in place protecting the machine operators.
Technical aspects…there is a lot of pride that goes into the work we all do. However, ego sometimes rears its ugly head with the statement “I got this” or “it’s not that bad”. Ask yourself a few questions…Do you have a good understanding of the OSHA regulations and ANSI standards? Do you know how to choose the right products from suppliers as it relates to your specific needs? Do you know how to properly construct the barrier guards, position the electronic safety devices, and integrate them into your equipment all while achieving the required level of safety? If you cannot confidently answer all of these questions as it relates to executing your machine guarding directives, it will cause catastrophic results if you “give it a shot”.
Pricing is certainly a valid piece of the equation, but when you consider buying only product from a supplier you are putting yourself at risk of consequences related to your machine guarding projects. To avoid these types of consequences, you must consider a turnkey safety solutions provider and one that covers the entire United States. These companies that focus on custom design, fabrication, and nationwide installation bring several advantages which will provide peace of mind to you and your company. These advantages include understanding regulations and standards, ability to review your process to spec the proper products, create consistency in designs not only isolated to one machine but for multiple machines and/or facilities across the country, the proper safety programs and insurance coverage, and better communication.
The decision to invest in the turnkey safety solution reduces pain points, improves workplace safety attitudes, potentially reduces the lag time between hazardous exposure and machine guarding ultimately lowering the chance of being another OSHA statistic. Take all of this into account the next time you are at a crossroad of improving your machine safety.
Authored and self-published by Shawn Mantel, Owner / Operator at PowerSafe Automation
Shawn Mantel is the owner and author of the @powersafeautomation blog posts, where he helps to educate and spark ideas with workers on how to improve workplace safety through turnkey safety guarding solutions.
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