Sixteen percent of all injuries reported to the United States Department of Labor in 2014 were related to faulty machinery components. In addition, fatalities have gradually increased over the past three years, demonstrating that safety has not been a priority in the mining industry.
If regular equipment maintenance saves even a single life per year, then it should be implemented into the daily work process. Occasional inspection and repairs of equipment isn’t enough to keep it functioning at peak performance. Here are some tips to ensure equipment maintenance is properly executed and the safety of employees improves:
Tip #1: Create an Inspection Schedule
By sticking to a schedule and noting each problem or repair, patterns can be noticed and parts can be replaced before a problem exists.
Tip #2: Keep Equipment Clean
Cleaning equipment regularly prevents buildup of dirt and rocks which can wear out parts faster if not removed.
Tip #3: Keep Employees Well Trained
Not only should new employees be trained on equipment use and safety, but existing employees should be re-trained regularly to remind them of the safety precautions that should be taken daily.
Tip #4: Check for Hydraulic Leaks
Hydraulic leaks create a hazardous workspace, environmental damage, and can lead to painful fluid injection injuries. Regular maintenance will improve safety, save money in lost fluid, and decrease the possibility of losing work days due to malfunctioning equipment.
Tip #5: Create a Positive Safety Environment
Create an environment where employees know that their safety is a priority and feedback is encouraged. They should feel free to communicate their concerns or make suggestions.