Every year, many work-related injuries are caused by the improper use of compressed air. To help you prevent and reduce the risk of accidents, discover our safety solutions through examples experienced in industry. Click on the word ‘’Situation’’ to display the encountered situation and on the word ‘’Solution’’ to view the proposed Topring solution.
In mines, compressed air is used to clean equipment and remove debris. In order to prevent air hoses from disconecting accidentally and causing hose whips, operators have installed safety chains between the hose and the fitting. Unfortunately, this solution does not prevent injuries caused by a sectioned hose. Since workers are an invaluable resource in the mining industry and ensuring their safety is the #1 priority, a different method of prevention should be used.
Installing a Topring HOSEGUARD safety valve on each hose helps prevent hose whips. This safety valve cuts downstream pressure as soon as the system experiences any pressure drop due to hose disconnection or rupture. In addition to being highly effective, this prevention device is maintenance free.
Employees of a confectionery manufacturer used air blow guns to dislodge starch dust from their clothing (a very fine and volatile product). This technique, prohibited by law, is widespread, although very dangerous. The particles projected into the air after blowing are generally inhaled by the employees. This can cause long-term respiratory complications and illnesses.
For the sake of its employees' safety, the company has installed Topring pneumatic vacuum cleaner at multiple workstations throughout the plant. Designed to meet OSHA requirements, the pneumatic vacuum cleaner is equipped with an air-agitator brush that dislodges the dust before vacuuming it up quickly and safely. In addition to ensuring the safety of users, these units powered by compressed air, and not by an electric motor, eliminate any risk of sparks.
As a practical joke, a user blew compressed air directly onto the skin of his coworker. The victim suffered serious injuries and had to be transported to the hospital. Many are unaware that air blowing can cause personal injuries. For instance, compressed air, blown into the mouth, can seriously injure the lungs, stomach, intestines or other internal organs. Powerful enough to penetrate clothing and skin, compressed air can enter within the bloodstream and cause a stroke.
As a result of this accident, the company equipped all its workstations with Topring maximum safety blow guns. These safety blow guns are unique; in the event of an obstruction of the nozzle, a shut-off valve located inside the mechanism shuts off the airflow immediately. Once the nozzle is free of any obstruction, the valve re-engages to release the air.
A floor manufacturer used a semi-automatic wood sorter. The operator had to take the planks of wood to bring them to the next stage and occasionally the planks would be stuck together. The operator would then access the back of the sorter to shut off the compressed air supply in order to seperate the planks without the machine restarting abruptly. In addition to a loss in efficiency, the risks and dangers for the operator were high.
Topring has made it possible to install a safe shut off valve in front of the sorter. This ergonomic enhancement cuts the power supply, quickly and safely, for the operator.
A machine used to discharge its oil and dirt from five compressors into the environment. Following a visit from a Topring technical expert, the owner realized he did not comply with the environmental regulations on condensate discharges. He risked significant penalties; oily condensate seriously affect the treatment of wastewater. For reference, a compressor with a 100 SCFM refrigerant dryer operating at 25 °C in 65% relative humidity for 4000 hours can produce up to 10,000 liters of condensate.
The company installed a water/oil separator at the outlet of each compressor to effectively dispose of condensates according to the environmental regulations and contribute to public safety.
The operators of a pharmaceutical company used blow guns to clean the dust from the bins and conveyors. An evaluation from the CNESST noted that the noise exposure level of their operators was higher than 95 dB. An 8-hour daily exposure to noise levels above 85 dB can damage hearing. Among the injuries compensated by the CNESST, occupational deafness is one of the most common health problems. This is why taking preventive measures is important.
Aware that a change could greatly improve working conditions, the company replaced all blow guns with silent guns. Thanks to this intervention, the noise level has decreased from 85 to 71.6 dB, making the environment safe for operators.