05 Oct Crushing Hazards
Crushing accidents occur when the body or any part of the body is squeezed between two moving objects or caught between one moving and one stationary object. Minor crushing accidents can cost workers in many ways, in pain, disability, and the loss of a job. Major crushing accidents can even cost a life.
There are some simple things workers can do to lessen their chance of experiencing crushing injuries. The first, and most important thing, is for workers to know when they are placing themselves or any of their body parts in a situation of possible injury.
Workers must always be aware of where they are in relation to moving equipment around them. When in these situations, workers must allow enough room to compensate for equipment failure or operator error. Workers should stay within the equipment operators vision at all times.
Workers should make it their business to stay out from under any load to avoid the possibility of being crushed from above. “If it’s in the air, it’s dangerous.” Employers should never permit a load to be raised, lowered, or swung over a workers head. It is also the workers responsibility to shut‐off, lock‐out, or tag‐out all energy sources, and to test to assure that they are dead BEFORE attempting to work on or clear equipment capable of any movement or activation.
But wait, there’s more. What about “minor” crushing accidents like a finger, toe, or the entire hand or foot? Be aware of hand and foot placement at all times. Gloves are good protection against scrapes and cuts, but they aren’t going to help when that 30 lb. piece of junk comes down on your toe.
YOU are the most important pieces of equipment out there; make sure you are safe and in good operating condition.