Safety Articles

The safety technology area has information for protecting workers directly with personal protection equipment and indirectly with interlocks, light curtains, machine guards, barriers, safety curtains, sensors, and ventilation systems.

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A welding ventilation overview

August 25, 2015 | By Benjamin Howell

Incredibly high temperatures and a bright arc flash aren’t the only two dangerous elements of welding. Harmful ultrafine particulate matter generated during welding operations can pose major health risks to welders. Modern extraction and filtration systems are designed to provide effective industrial safety. In many cases, fabricators find that the added filtration equipment contributes to increased productivity as well.

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Safe and round with tube and pipe handling?

August 4, 2015 | By Douglas Raff

Worker safety in U.S. manufacturing facilities has improved greatly over the past 25 years, but it's amazing the dangers that still exist in some operations. Tube and pipe facilities actually represent a segment of the fabricating world where some of these risks are most obvious. A look at a couple of tube and pipe scenarios proves what some companies try to get away with and how those safety risks can easily be addressed.

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How employees drive a safe work environment

July 20, 2015 | By Dan Davis

The Dupps Co., Germantown, Ohio, is a fabricator of heavy-duty processing equipment that has managed to post 2 million work hours without a lost-time accident. For its outstanding safety record, the company was named the recipient of FMA's 2015 Rusty Demeules Award for Safety Excellence.

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Going beyond OSHA regulations for manganese exposure

May 11, 2015 | By Jeff Jackson

Complying with OSHA guidelines for manganese exposure during welding may not be doing welders any favors. One Oregon metal fabricator invited OSHA into its shop to look for ways to reduce the potential of manganese exposure. The combination of low-manganese welding wire and proper ventilation positioning appears to have cleared the air on this subject.

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How clean is the air in your manufacturing facility?

March 24, 2015 | By Jim Reid

Metalworking facilities have to meet basic federal requirements for indoor air quality, but some companies may choose to go beyond that to create a work environment that encourages employee engagement and higher productivity.

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OSHA shines spotlight on metal fabricating

February 10, 2015 | By Shannon DeCamp

For the sake of maintaining a safe work environment and keeping the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s investigators out of business operations, metal fabricators should be aware of the areas where they can improve their own safety performance. OSHA’s citations provide a guide to where the focus should go.

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Safety catchers protect hydraulic, pneumatic press

January 28, 2015 | By Shane Hatfield

Safety catchers prevent a load from crashing down at any position of ascent if a hydraulic or pneumatic pressure system fails, or if a rope, chain, belt, or toothed drive breaks.

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1+1+1+1 = Clarity

January 21, 2015 | By Jamy Bulan

Selecting a helmet involves more than just pulling one off of a shelf, putting it on, and getting to work. A number of considerations come into play during the selection process — personal safety, wearer comfort, and optical clarity. The latter has moved from something hard to determine without guesswork to something that has true quantifiable benchmarks with the advent of the European Standard EN 379 1/1/1/1.

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Metal fabrication, efficiency, and safety

November 6, 2014 | By Dick Kallage

Morality and fear often drive safety investments. People don’t want to see people get hurt, and they don’t want fines from a terrible accident to put them out of business. But there’s another driver that’s sometimes overlooked: efficiency. Safety is an important part of the foundation for efficiency and operational improvement.

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Driving profitability while protecting employees

November 6, 2014 | By Todd Hohn

Developing a total solutions approach to safety, health, and wellness is going to be critical to every employer’s business survival in the future. The best companies will be those that create a culture where everyone feels responsible for identifying, reporting, and reducing potential risks, greatly improving their ability to take proactive corrective action before anything bad happens.

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The bright side of proper fume extraction

October 30, 2014 | By Dan Davis

All Rite Industries, Lake Zurich, Ill., found success when it added robotic welding capabilities to its high-volume stamping business, but also found that its older fume extraction system couldn't keep up with the new cells. A new ventilation system helped to remove the shop floor haze.

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When fumes get out of control

September 29, 2014 | By Jon Ladwig

When fume extraction equipment is on the fritz, there are definite warning signs present that should alert you to the problem. The more attentive you are to what these warning signs are, and the more familiar you are with how to address these problems, the quicker you can ensure that the health and safety of shop personnel and equipment will be restored.

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Why safety is personal at Michigan metal fabricator

September 29, 2014 | By Tim Heston

Sue Rollins takes safety personally, and for good reason. The quality assurance manager and safety coordinator at Genzink Steel, Holland Mich., has a life history greatly affected by workplace hazards. To be effective and to convey her message, she makes quality and safety personal.

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How to prepare for the aging workforce

August 27, 2014 | By Brian Roberts

The aging workforce is a complex, multifaceted issue, but it has one immutable fact: There will be more older people working than ever before. Older workers can be incredibly valuable to a manufacturer. They have the experience and skill that this industry craves. But you can’t escape biology. As we get older, the body changes, and the workplace needs to account for these changes. The good news is that these changes not only help older workers, but every employee at the company.

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Safety first at McAlpin Industries

July 21, 2014 | By Dan Davis

A consultant told the management of McAlpin Industries, Rochester, N.Y., that it was only a matter of time before the metal fabricator suffered a major safety incident. That spurred the shop to take steps to create a safety-first environment. Today, McAlpin Industries has been recognized with one of the top safety awards in manufacturing: the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association’s Rusty Demeules Award for Safety Excellence.

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