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Cardboard Baler Safety

- June 5, 2018 by Ken Helfrich (View all posts by Ken)

Cardboard waste is a never ending battle for many companies.  As a result, cardboard balers are used in many industries on a daily basis. But, because they are not part of production, the safety training on the machine is sometimes overlooked.  The most common types of injuries associated with balers are crushing injuries, amputations, cuts and eye injuries. Below are some training tips for your staff.

BEFORE an employee starts working with a baler, they should be familiar with the manufacturer’s operator manual and be trained on following:

      • Always wear the right personal protective equipment, including leather gloves, supportive shoes with non-slip soles and safety glasses.
      • Ensure the area around the bailer is clear.
      • Never reach into the point of operation.
      • Never bypass a guard or interlock.
      • Do not use the bailer if the guard or interlock is missing or defective.
      • If the baler is not safe to use, notify a supervisor immediately.
      • Never wear jewelry, loose clothing, loose hair, or other items which may be caught in machinery.
      • Do not make bales oversized, Know the capacity of the baler.
      • Stay several feet back from the area of door swing.
      • Stay clear when pushing bale out.
      • Do not unjam the machine without safety controls in place like lockout tagout.

Supervisors should be familiar with the baler operation as well.  Supervisors should always:

  • Read the owner’s manual and understand the operating procedures.
  • Not allow anyone under 18 to use the bailer.
  • Assure all preventive maintenance is current.
  • Assure that the emergency stop buttons are all checked on a routine basis.
  • Make sure they are providing training to all employees who use the machine even if a person is just helping for the day.
  • Always keep control of the bailer key when not in use.

Making sure your baler is used safely takes a little more effort than just putting up a sign or applying a warning sticker. Make sure you have documented training and written operating procedures for the machine.