By Liz White, ERJ staff
London-Tyre and rubber processors who use calenders should make working conditions safer for operators by making sure they follow new advice from the UK's Health and Safety Executive on threading these important pieces of equipment.
* All safety guards should be in position during threading, said the HSE;
* A minimum of two people should be in attendance throughout the whole threading operation; and
* A 'slow crawl' operating speed should be used throughout.
Material is passed through calenders-which have a number of heated or unheated horizontal rolls-under pressure. Operators tend to suffer injuries as material is first threaded into the rollers, when fingers, hands or arms can become trapped.
The new advice from the HSE applies to calenders installed before 1998 and revises guidance first published by The Rubber Industry Advisory Committee (RUBIAC).
RUBIAC's original publication, 'Safeguarding of Calenders in the Rubber Industry,' was found to be impractical for most calenders that predate the publication. "As a result, the guidance was routinely ignored," said the HSE in a statement on the new recommendations.
A single-page amendment to the specific section covering threading has now been produced. The amendment can be obtained, free of charge, from HSE's Manufacturing Sector at Marshalls Mill, Marshall Street, Leeds LS11 9YJ or e-mail from: Rubiac [email protected]