Workplace machinery injuries are often horrific. The devastation to your body may be such that you never work again, need to change careers, or at the very least, need considerable time off to recover.
The law requires employers to provide you with safe working conditions, so here are some things that should entail when talking of machinery.
Train you to use the machine safely
If you walk into a workplace and see people using a machine, it is easy to assume it is safe. Yet all devices can be unsafe if used incorrectly. The employer must teach you how to work with each machine they require you to use.
Ensure machines have fully functioning safety guards
Manufacturers design machines with safety guards, yet sometimes people remove them because they think it slows them down or they find it a bother. Other times the guards become loose or broken.
It is up to your employer to check that the guards on all machines are in place and in good condition. If they ask you to carry on “just for today” after the guard breaks or falls off, you should refuse until they replace it.
Give you appropriate safety gear
Eyeglasses, ear protection and safety boots are necessary to work with most machines. Gloves may also be needed.
Have systems to ensure machines stay off when switched off
If you turn off the machine before cleaning it (which you should always do), you need a guarantee that no one else will turn it back on. There are various systems available to manage this.
If, for whatever reason, a machine still causes you a workplace injury, understanding how to claim workers’ compensation will be crucial.