Creating a safe manufacturing environment with Accuride
It’s common knowledge that manufacturing activities can bring a high risk of injury given all of the purpose-built parts that perform operations like slicing, pressing, and stretching at high speeds.
These injuries can be fatal: according to Procter Machine Safety’s ‘Designer’s Guide to Machinery Guarding Standards’ from October 2018, there were 15 fatal injuries in the manufacturing industry in the 2017/18 year. In the same year, 13 fatal injuries across all industries were caused by contact with machinery.
A safe environment for operators should be a top priority for any manufacturing supplier, with an expectation that any machinery will meet the relevant safety and guarding regulations and standards. Machinery safety in the UK is driven by two sets of regulations: The Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 as amended and The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER 98).
When it comes to machine guarding, the main standard is BS EN ISO 14120, which covers all machinery from simple drive couplings to very complex installations including robots, conveyors and processing machinery. Machine guards should protect operators from making contact with dangerous parts of machinery and other hazards, such as ejected material, friction and extremes of high or low temperatures.
Constructing machine guards with reliable materials and components is key to ensuring they perform in the exact ways they are supposed to. This can include ensuring that adjustable and interlocked guards will not only stay in place when operations are in progress, but will also move consistently and reliably when access may be required between operations or for maintenance purposes.
Components such as the DZ0115-0060RS linear slides (699-8502) from Accuride are often used in precision instrumentation, with the moving member fully supported at all times on ball bearings that can endure up to 10,000 cycles. When installed, they can carry an evenly distributed load of 60kg when horizontal and 50kg when vertical. They can be used as an upright non-load bearing guide.
For a wider and longer guide rail, the aluminium DA0115-0120RC (787-1470) has a width of 40mm, 4.9mm wider than the DZ0115-0060RS, and a length of 1.2m. Their corrosion resistance makes them suitable for a multitude of applications, including guidance and support for manufacturing equipment and machinery.
For larger and heavier applications, heavy-duty telescopic runners work perfectly for adjustable and interlocking guard systems on larger machinery. The DZ5321 series (666-4798) , also from Accuride, has a load capacity of up to 170kg and are capable of 100%+ full extension. The self-cleaning ball retainer keeps the slide moving smoothly, quietly and reliably, and the hold-in feature keeps it securely in a closed position when required.
The DZ9301 series (382-6899) of heavy-duty drawer slides is similar to the DZ5321, but can carry loads up to 227kg and can be flat or side mounted for different applications. This runner doesn’t disconnect which is a practical safety measure that prevents the risk of its load being dropped and causing damage to the contents or the operator. This slide is therefore ideal for a heavy-duty interlocking guard system, as the machine guard cannot be completely removed.
Accuride is a privately-owned company who specialises in the production of high quality telescopic and linear motion slides, guide rails and brackets. To find out more and explore products, visit www.accuride-europe.com