4th September 2007


 Issue No.  2007/22




HSE Puts Health and Safety into Print
From the beginning of September HSE inspectors in the Yorkshire and Humberside Region will be focusing their attention on some of the most common causes of accidents and ill health in the printing industry i.e. manual handling, slips and trips, contact with machinery and dermatitis.
Slips, trips and falls
  • 3 main causes of falls are poor housekeeping, poor maintenance and inclement weather conditions
  • 3 main trip hazards are pallets, uneven ground and strapping
  • 3 main slip hazards are wet floors, oil and ice
Manual handling
Frequent and heavy lifting and handling can cause serious back injuries in the following areas:
  • Transportation and loading of reels
  • Transporting and loading sheets
  • Knocking up sheets and paper stacking
  • Sheet//Pile turning
  • Loading and unloading guillotines
Where there is a serious risk of injury in these activities, mechanical handling or lifting aids should be used together with appropriate training.
Contact with machinery
Printing presses and conveyors are common sources of accidents due to operators etc. being drawn into the in-running nip of rollers, contact with moving parts and entanglement in rotating parts.
These occur whilst freeing blockages, cleaning, webbing-up, make-ready and maintenance caused by:
  • Inadequate safeguards allowing access to in-running nips
  • Inadequate/missing guards
  • Lack of maintenance leading to deteriorating control performance
  • Unsafe systems of work for cleaning
Print workers who use chemicals (inks, wash up solutions etc.) in the course of their work are at a higher risk of developing dermatitis than workers in general.
Dermatitis can be managed by providing information and training to employees; selecting appropriate gloves and hand creams for the job and ensuring employees use them correctly; carrying out skin checks for dermatitis and if necessary referring employees on for further medical diagnosis and treatment.
If you have any concerns when checking your safety measures please do call for advice.



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