Machinery Safety 101

ISO 13849 – 1 Analysis — Part 1: Start with Risk Assessment

This entry is part 1 of 9 in the series How to do a 13849 – 1 ana­lys­is

This post was updated 2019-07-24 I often get ques­tions from cli­ents about how to get star­ted on Func­tion­al Safety using ISO 13849. This art­icle is the first in a series that will walk you through the basics of using ISO 13849. Keep in mind that you will need to hold a copy of the 3rd edi­tion of ISO 13849 – 1 [1]…

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Testing Emergency Stop Systems

This entry is part 11 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

I’ve had a num­ber of ques­tions from read­ers regard­ing test­ing of emer­gency stop sys­tems, and par­tic­u­larly with the fre­quency of test­ing. I addressed the types of tests that might be needed in anoth­er art­icle cov­er­ing Check­ing Emer­gency Stop Sys­tems. This art­icle will focus on the fre­quency of test­ing rather than the types of tests. The Prob­lem Emer­gency…

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CSA Z432 Safeguarding of Machinery – 3rd Edition

If you build machinery for the Cana­dian mar­ket, or if you modi­fy equip­ment in Cana­dian work­places, you will be famil­i­ar with CSA Z432, Safe­guard­ing of Machinery. This stand­ard has been around since 1992, with the last major revi­sion pub­lished in 2004. CSA has recon­vened the Tech­nic­al Com­mit­tee respons­ible for this import­ant stand­ard to revise the…

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Emergency stop devices: the risks of installer liability

This entry is part 10 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

On the MachineBuilding.net blog today, Alex D’Arcy, Sales Dir­ect­or at Hylec-APL provides some inter­est­ing insights into the liab­il­it­ies asso­ci­ated with the install­a­tion of emer­gency stop devices on machinery. Hylec-APL provides tech­nic­al products and solu­tions in the field of indus­tri­al machinery and emer­gency stop sys­tems. Check out Alex’s art­icle. If you need to know more about the…

Interlock Architectures – Pt. 5: Category 4 — Control Reliable

This entry is part 5 of 8 in the series Cir­cuit Archi­tec­tures Explored

Ed. note: I’ve made a few updates to this art­icle since it was first pub­lished in 2011, with the most recent today, 6‑Dec-18. – DN – The most reli­able of the five sys­tem archi­tec­tures, Cat­egory 4 is the only archi­tec­ture that uses mul­­tiple-fault tol­er­ant tech­niques to help ensure that com­pon­ent fail­ures do not res­ult in an unac­cept­able…

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Interlock Architectures – Pt. 4: Category 3 – Control Reliable

Category 3 Architecture Logic Block Diagram
This entry is part 4 of 8 in the series Cir­cuit Archi­tec­tures Explored

Cat­egory 3 sys­tem archi­tec­ture is the first cat­egory that could be con­sidered to have sim­il­ar­ity to “Con­trol Reli­able” cir­cuits or sys­tems as defined in the North Amer­ic­an stand­ards. It is not the same as Con­trol Reli­able, but we’ll get to in a sub­sequent post. If you haven’t read the first three posts in this series, you may…

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New contact block design for Emergency Stop devices from Siemens

This entry is part 9 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

One issue that fre­quently comes up when inspect­ing machinery is the con­tact blocks used on emer­gency stop devices. Until now, e‑stop devices were nor­mally fit­ted with the same con­tact blocks used on oth­er oper­at­or devices, and in cases where the e‑stop sys­tem is single chan­nel, you could lose the con­tact block off the back of…

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Updates to Popular Articles

This entry is part 8 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

We’ve recently updated a couple of our pop­u­lar art­icles! Check them out! Bust­ing Emer­gency Stop Myths Read­er Ques­tion: Mul­tiple E‑Stops and Resets

Reader Question: Multiple E‑Stops and Resets

This entry is part 7 of 16 in the series Emer­gency Stop

I had an inter­est­ing ques­tion come in from a read­er today that is rel­ev­ant to many situ­ations: “When you have mul­tiple E‑Stop but­tons I have often got­ten into an argu­ment that says you can have a reset beside each one. I was taught that you were required to have a single point of reset. Who is cor­rect?” — Michael Barb,…

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Understanding the Hierarchy of Controls

The Hierarchy of Controls illustrated as an inverted triangle with each level of the hierarchy written one above the other, starting with Inherently Sfe design, then Engineering Controls, then Information for Use, then Administrative Controls and finally descending to PPE at the bottom. An arrow with the text "Effectiveness" on it runs parallel to the triangle and points downward from Inherently safe design to PPE.
This entry is part 4 of 5 in the series Hier­archy of Con­trols

(Eds. note: This art­icle was ori­gin­ally writ­ten in 2011 and was updated in Nov. 2018.) The “Hier­archy of Con­trols” is one approach to risk reduc­tion that has become entrenched in the Occu­pa­tion­al Health and Safety (OHS) sec­tor. There are oth­er approaches to risk reduc­tion which are equally effect­ive but are less rigidly struc­tured. If you…

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