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Programme to Reduce Equipment Accidents

24 February 2011

US - The Department of Consumer and Business Services’ Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA)is to start a prograsmme to reduce injuries and workplace risks that result in amputations.

The agency will focus more on inspections of job sites with machinery, equipment, and processes that cause amputations and job sites where amputations have occurred in the past, including meat packing plants, food processing, pulp and paper mills, sawmills, cabinet manufacturing, sheet metal work, foundries, and commercial printing among others.

“The loss of a finger or limb can be life changing for any worker,” said Oregon OSHA Administrator Michael Wood.

“This emphasis programme will help us identify risks earlier so that employers can prevent amputations.”

From 2005 to 2009, Oregon had more than 800 accepted workers’ compensation claims for amputations. Machinery was the source of more than half of those claims, and powered hand tools added another eight per cent to the total.

Nearly all of the amputations – 97 per cent – were fingers.

Inspectors will assess machinery cleaning, jams, and regular operations, along with maintenance procedures. The scope of an inspection may be expanded to address unrelated hazards if they pose a serious danger.

TheMeatSite News Desk

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