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Posted on: February 22, 2016 By: Trevor Atherton, Safety Mgr

Cutting and Grinding Safety

Cutting and grinding is performed on many jobsites.  The following are a list of safety precautions that must be followed to prevent injury or property damage.Gribbins Insulation - Toolbox Talk

  • Stay alert and watch what you are doing.  Do not use tool while tired or under the influence of drugs, alcohol or medication.  A moment of inattention when operating power tools may result in serious personal injury.
  • Loose clothes, gloves, jewelry or long hair can be caught in moving parts.  Keep them away.
  • Avoid accidental starting.  Be sure switch is off before plugging in.  Carrying tools with your finger on the switch or plugging in tools that have the switch on invites accidents.
  • Do not overreach.  Keep proper footing and balance at all times.  Proper footing and balance enable better control of the tool in unexpected situations.
  • Always wear safety glasses, face shield, protective gloves, suitable protective clothing, hard hat, steel toe boots and hearing protection and dust mask if necessary.  Keep other employees away while operating power tools.
  • Always use proper guard with grinding wheel, it protects operator from broken wheel fragments. Turn the wheel guard so that the closed area is towards the operator.
  • First switch on and only present the tool to the workpiece once it is running.
  • Wheels and other accessories running over rated speed can fly apart and cause injury.  Use at least “max. 80m/s”.
  • Always use with the side handle installed and keep both hands on the tool at all times during use.
  • Ensure that sparks produced during work do not constitute a risk to the user or other personnel and are not able to ignite inflammable substances.  Endangered areas must be protected with flame-resistant covers.  Make sure that fire-risk areas are always provided with suitable fire extinguishers.
  • Carry out a test run after every tool change, ensuring that you are holding the angle grinder firmly with both hands.  Hold the angle grinder away form your body.  Ensure that there is no-one present in the area at risk.  Run the angle grinder for approximately 30 seconds.
  • The angle grinder runs on for approximately 5 seconds after switch-off.  Do not attempt to touch the moving tool due to risk of injury
  • Never use cutting discs for grinding purposes.  Cutting discs must not be subjected to any lateral pressure.
  • Angle grinder in continuous operation:  To avoid the possibility of unintentional start-up:  always turn off the switch when the plug is removed form the socket or if an interruption to the power supply has occurred.
  • Ensure that the accessories used always fulfill the following minimum requirements.  Respect the maximum grinding-disc diameter.  The diameter of the central hole in the grinding disc (3) must fit the inner flange (10) without any play.  Do not use any adapters or reducers.
  • Use clamps or other practical way to secure and support the workpiece to a stable platform.  Holing the work by hand or against your body is unstable and may lead to loss of control.
  • Do not force tool.  Use the correct tool for your application.  The correct tool will do the job better and safer at the rate for which it is designed.  Abrasive wheels shall be stored and handled with care in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions
  • Disconnect the plug form the power source before making any adjustments, changing accessories, or storing the tool.  Such preventive safety measures reduce the risk of starting the tool accidentally.
  • Use only accessories that are recommended by the manufacturer for your model.
  • Inspect the tool before each use to ensure cutting edges are sharp, the on and off switch works, the clamp nut is in place and secure, ventilation openings are clear, thread in the disc is long enough for the spindle, the disc is not contaminated or has been subject to impact, alignment, moving parts are not in a binding situation, its not vibrating

Kickback Prevention:

Kickback is a sudden reaction to a pinched, bound or misaligned wheel causing an uncontrolled cut-off tool to lift up and out of the workpiece toward the operator.
Kickback results from tool misuse and/or incorrect operating procedures or conditions and can be avoided by taking the following precautions:   Maintain a firm grip with both hands on the unit and position your body and arms to allow you to resist kickback forces.  When wheel is binding, or when interrupting a cut for any reason, release the trigger and hold the unit motionless in the material until the wheel comes to a complete stop.  Never attempt to remove the unit from the work or pull the unit backward while the wheel is in motion or kickback may occur.   When restarting a cut-off tool in the workpiece, check that the wheel in not engaged into the material.  If the wheel is binding, it may walk up or kickback from the workpiece as the tool is restarted.  Support large panels to minimize the risk of wheel pinching and kickback.  Large panels tend to sag under their own weight.  Support must be placed under the panel on both sides, near the line of cut and near the edge of the panel.

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