Findings From the National Machine Guarding Program–A Small Business Intervention: Machine Safety

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Abstract

Objectives:

The purpose of this nationwide intervention was to improve machine safety in small metal fabrication businesses (3 to 150 employees). The failure to implement machine safety programs related to guarding and lockout/tagout (LOTO) are frequent causes of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) citations and may result in serious traumatic injury.

Methods:

Insurance safety consultants conducted a standardized evaluation of machine guarding, safety programs, and LOTO. Businesses received a baseline evaluation, two intervention visits, and a 12-month follow-up evaluation.

Results:

The intervention was completed by 160 businesses. Adding a safety committee was associated with a 10% point increase in business-level machine scores (P < 0.0001) and a 33% point increase in LOTO program scores (P < 0.0001).

Conclusions:

Insurance safety consultants proved effective at disseminating a machine safety and LOTO intervention via management-employee safety committees.

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