Hierarchy of Controls

Forces, people and injuries — How hard is too hard?

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ISO/TS 15066 body model
This entry is part 5 of 5 in the series Hier­archy of Con­trols

For any­one involved in risk assess­ment and con­trol, there are always ques­tions regard­ing the amount of force it takes to injure a per­son. As soon as we decided that hurt­ing people when they were work­ing or using our products was not OK, clev­er people wanted to know what the lim­its were on forces applied to people. […]

Canada

Instructions for Use – the New ISO 20607

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Instruc­tions are one of the basic items that users expect to get when they pur­chase a product, and yet these import­ant doc­u­ments are often poorly writ­ten, badly trans­lated, and incom­plete. Key product fea­tures are badly described, and inform­a­tion on fea­tures, set­tings and haz­ards may be absent. All of this des­pite the fact that the min­im­um require­ments […]

Canada

More E‑Stop Questions

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This entry is part 17 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

Here are some more ques­tions I’ve been asked regard­ing emer­gency stop require­ments. These ones came to me through the IEEE PSES EMC-PSTC Product Com­pli­ance For­um mail­ing list. Primary Sources There are three primary sources for the require­ments for emer­gency stop devices: [1] Safety of machinery — Emer­gency stop — Prin­ciples for design, 3rd Edi­tion. ISO 13850. 2015. [2] Safety of […]

Complementary Protective Measures

Can Emergency Stop be used as an “on/off” control?

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Emergency Stop Button
This entry is part 16 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

Every couple of months I get an email ask­ing me if there is any reas­on why e‑stop func­tions can­’t be used as the primary power con­trol (on/off but­ton) for machinery. Fol­low­ing a recent exchange, I thought I would share the reas­ons for why this is such a bad idea. The short answer The short answer is an unequi­voc­al NO. Don’t […]

Complementary Protective Measures

Introduction to Functional Safety Seminars

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Man training a group of people, pointing to Functional Safety topics on the whiteboard

If you are inter­ested in func­tion­al safety, and I know many read­ers are based on the stat­ist­ics I see for my oth­er func­tion­al safety-related posts, I think you will be inter­ested in this. I am col­lab­or­at­ing with the IEEE Product Safety Engin­eer­ing Soci­ety’s Vir­tu­al Chapter to provide a series of three 35 minute sem­inars dis­cuss­ing the fun­da­ment­als of func­tion­al safety. The […]

News

1,000,000

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1 Million Views!

1,000,000 views! Today marks a fant­ast­ic mile­stone for the Machinery Safety 101 blog – 1,000,000 views! When I star­ted writ­ing this blog back in Octo­ber 2008, I had high hopes that a few dozens, or per­haps as many as 1 000 people would find my art­icles inter­est­ing enough to spend some time read­ing. Nev­er in my wild­est ima­gin­ings did I think […]

Hazard Warnings

Do-It-Yourself Safety Labels, Signs and Tags

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Safety label on a roller conveyor
This entry is part 1 of 5 in the series Hier­archy of Con­trols

One of the great chal­lenges that all product design­ers face is the sourcing of appro­pri­ate product safety labels. There are many sources for off-the-shelf labels includ­ing some of the biggest names in mark­ing and labelling, but until now, none have offered a way for product man­u­fac­tur­ers to devel­op stand­ards-com­pli­ant haz­ard warn­ing signs and labels them­selves. If […]

Complementary Protective Measures

Emergency Stop Pull-Cords

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This entry is part 15 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

This art­icle was updated 2019-04-26, adding spe­cif­ic details related to IEC 60947 – 5‑5. When it comes to emer­gency stop devices there is no doubt that the red mush­­room-head push but­ton is the most com­mon – they seem to be every­where. The second most com­mon emer­gency stop device is the pull-cord, and like the light-cur­­tain in safe­guard­ing […]