Conveyor Belt Pin Extractor - Dairy Farmers P/L
Best solution to a workplace health and safety issue - 2012 Awards
Two of our regular contractors designed and made a tool that can be used to remove pins in a conveyor belt in order to separate the belt from the equipment. Team members reported difficulty with manually removing these pins when pulling apart the conveyor to clean. The tool allows easy removal without the need to place excess stress on the fingers and hands & hazards when using pliers.
Our business is located some 250km south west of Melbourne. We cut and package cheese for retail and food service sales. We employee approx 250 people, comprising of full/part time, casuals and contractors.
What was the issue/s at the workplace?
There was no implement (tool) to remove the pins which allowed four large conveyor belts to be removed safely. Team members were instead using pliers to remove the pins (look like long nails). The pliers made it difficult to hold onto the pins causing stress on the hands and fingers and the risk of pliers slipping causing injury.
What did you do to control it/resolve it?
We have two contractors that have done a lot of work with this new equipment. After discussing the concerns with the team members they were able to design a tool that they could use to remove the pins. Feedback from team members has been positive as team members have reported that it is much easier to remove the pins when cleaning.
Who did you talk to about the issue/s or who helped you resolve it?
The maintenance dept talked to the operators (across three shifts) that worked on the line about the issues in removing the pins and the hazards associated with what they were doing.
Adam and Bruce (contractors) were then able to design and make the pin extractor tool.
What was the outcome? How is the workplace better now?
The safer removal of pins allowing team members to pull apart and clean the conveyors easily and without injury.
This is not only safer, but is also more time efficient, reducing down time due incorrectly assembled belts.
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