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Machinery Safety in the Workplace

How to help prevent accidents involving machinery

Notification of all accidents at work to the Administration of Occupational Safety and Health, as absence due to an accident is one day beyond the day of accident or the employee is likely to be suffering from a permanent or permanent health hazard.

The Labor Inspectorate's Notification Form is a column specifying the cause of injury.

The cause of injury is divided into ten categories:

Causes of injury / Categories
1 Hit
2 Clamped, Stuck in a Machine
3 Fall on the Ground
4 Fall off Higher Place
5 Honey, Edged Thing
6 Overcurrent on Body
Heat or Cold
Electric Current, Electric Flare
Hazardous Substances and Compounds
10 Other

The most common cause of injuries to accidents at work in Iceland over the past 10 years is (3) Disaster relief, approx. 23 percent. The following categories are (4) Fall of higher place and (2) Clamped, machine stuck with usually ten percent of accidents each.

Below is a summary of the statistical information about the cause of injury from the turn of the century for the category (2) Clamped, clamped into the machine .

As can be seen from the pillar, they clamp or attach to the machine every year from 126 to 253 people. Many of these accidents with machines are very serious, fracture or loss of body parts.

The column shows that these accidents were the most common at the end of the boom in 2005-2007. In 2007, the situation was the worst, every working day was a work accident, where a person clamped or stuck on a machine. During the crisis years, these accidents decreased considerably, but they have been almost 200 per year in recent years.

These accidents are such that it is easier to prevent them than most other accidents.


If machinery and equipment meet the safety requirements requested today, it is almost impossible to accidents there.

Clear rules for machine safety

All too often, the Occupational Safety and Health Authority meets the beliefs and misunderstandings that the employee who hugged a machine should know better than having a body part into the machine's hazardous area. It should not be possible to enter the machine's hazardous areas while in operation.

Everyone's got to forget about it or make mistakes sometimes because of stress or fatigue. Personnel should not be at risk of squeezing or losing body parts due to instantaneous negligence.

In Regulation no. 367/2006 on the use of devices states that "when there is a risk of contact with moving parts of the device in such a way that an accident can be avoided, it shall be fitted with such guards or other appropriate equipment that prevents access to a hazardous area or stops the movement of those parts before but in a danger zone has come ".

It is the experience of the Administration of Occupational Safety and Health that in most accidents with machinery and equipment there is no appropriate safety device. Machines are sometimes the oldest to have never had the safety equipment required today. Unfortunately, security features have often been removed. In the worst cases, the safety device is disabled and the machine is "plugged", for example, by connecting with a safety device. Both new and old machines must meet the minimum safety standards.

Prevent premature startup of machines. Lock - mark - test / confirm

Recently, there has been a horrific accident in Iceland with hardware that has been cleaning or servicing. In all industries in Iceland there is a lot of automated equipment and other hardware that needs both cleaning and maintenance. Such equipment may be at high risk, especially if the device can start automatically.

In Regulation no. 367/2006 on the use of appliances are clear general minimum requirements for machinery and equipment at work. Requirements are made for safe management, how it should look, where to locate it and how it should work.

To prevent premature startup of machines, many companies have set up systems. The largest in Iceland are all with such systems. There is an implementation gap between these systems, but the purpose is always to prevent premature startup and accident.

In a brochure from Elkem, which they call Lock-Mark-Test , it is stated that the employee of the company working on a machine must lock it with its personal lock. The lock should be marked by name, phone number and company.

Óskari Erni Pétursson from the engineering company Mannvit discussed a similar system in lecture on the system "Insulation Energy - Lock - Mark - Confirm" .

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Occupational Safety and Health Administration is the center of occupational health and safety in the country and is based on the integration of surveillance, education and research.