Pinch point injuries can occur when workers do not take the proper safety precautions. Injuries result from workers trying to cut corners, lack of focus, or not being adequately trained. Pinch points can occur on any part of the body when caught between two objects. These injuries can be prevented with exemplary control efforts. Also, having the proper lockout/tagout procedures in place can reduce pinch point hazards.
Any person who operates, cleans, or services machinery or equipment should be aware of the hazards presented by that machine. It is always important not to get complacent and constantly monitor your hands when completing any task. Pinch points can occur on any part of the body and result in serious injury, including amputation or death.
Ways to reduce the risk of pinch point hazards:
- Eliminate the hazard by ensuring the proper guarding is in place.
- Do not place your hands where you cannot see them.
- Make sure to have on proper PPE (gloves, safety glasses, and safety shoes).
- Replace worn or damaged PPE.
- Inspect your machine and its surroundings before starting work.
- Lift, carry and place containers and equipment carefully.
- Give every task your full attention.
- Never perform a task without proper training.
- Do not bypass safety procedures.
- Maintain a clean and tidy workplace by following housekeeping practices.
- Clothing, jewelry, and hair that is too loose might be snagged. Before working near pinch point risks, wear tightened clothes, remove jewelry, and tie long hair back or put it beneath a hat.
- Encourage employees to communicate if they feel unsafe or see safety concerns.
- Always remember that safety is everyone’s responsibility.