Force and injury—How hard is too hard? ISO/TR 21260 will help

ISO/TS 15066 body model

Force represents the mechanical energy that causes injury to the human body. ISO/TC 199 has been working on answering that question since 2012.

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Do-It-Yourself Safety Labels, Signs and Tags

Safety label on a roller conveyor

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.…

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The Third Level of the Hierarchy: Information for Use

I’ve written about the Hierarchy of Controls in past posts, but I’ve focused on the ‘engineering’ side of the control equation: Physical changes to machine design to eliminate hazards, and mechanical or electrical control systems that can reduce risk. The first two levels of the Hierarchy, Elimination/Substitution and Engineering Controls, are typically more challenging to…

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Hockey Teams and Risk Reduction or What Makes Roberto Luongo = PPE

Canucks Hockey Flag

Special Co-Author, Tom Doyle Last week we saw the Boston Bruins earn the Stanley Cup. I was rooting for the green, blue and white, and the ruin of my voice on Thursday was ample evidence that no amount of cheering helped. While I was watching the game with friends and colleagues, I realized that Roberto…

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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.

(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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