Staying Safe at Work: 5 Dangers You Need to Be Wary of If You’re Working in the Manufacturing Industry

The American manufacturing industry employs 12 million people and producing products as diverse as garments, plastics, electronic components and automobiles. Working with heavy machinery on a daily basis comes with its own set of unique risks. Mitigating these risks should be a priority for companies and employees.

These are the five biggest dangers manufacturing workers need to be aware of and take precautions against.

Loss of Hearing

The manufacturing industries use machinery that often omits loud noises. Over time, these industrial machines can damage workers’ hearing. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration law requires employees to provide hearing protection for employees working in an environment where noise levels exceed 90 decibels for more than eight hours or 115 decibels for more than 15 minutes.

Machine Guarding

One manufacturer producing metal containers in Chicago has to pay out more than $81,000 following a third worker losing their arm in a workplace injury. The safety guards responsible for protecting employees using the machinery were not installed properly.

Not only is the incident a tragic accident, but it is also a costly mistake for the company. Machine safety guards and doors should be a priority for any business in protecting their workers and their bottom line. Get more information about guard doors and machine guarding by visiting

Safety Training

A factory is only as safe as the employees working in the facility. If the employees don’t know how to use safety apparatus and are not properly trained and educated in the safest industry working practices, your manufacturing facility becomes a ticking time bomb with a severe accident just waiting to happen.

Ensure there is a rigorous safety training program in place and every employee receives instruction on the optimal working practices for their job. There should also be infrastructure in place to provide all employees with first aid training and CPR instruction. This way, in the event of an emergency, there are people on hand to step in and potentially save a worker’s life.

Equipment Hazards

When machinery and heavy equipment malfunctions, the consequences can be deadly. In the manufacturing sectors, in particular, it is of paramount importance that machinery is well-maintained and checked regularly to ensure it is in good working condition and does not pose a threat to employees.

Electric shocks from exposed and corroded wires, or snapped belts causing surfaces to fall can gravely injure or even kill unsuspecting workers. Any potential equipment problems should be identified and reported at the earliest opportunity to avoid any workplace accidents.

Lockout/Tagout Procedures

Workplace lockout and tagout procedures must be in place and observed any time repairs are underway. An unexpected surge on electrical current or a machine unexpectedly starting while repairs are underway can cause serious injury.

Lockout and tagout procedures will confirm that a machine’s power supply has been disconnected and will clearly advertise when repairs are being undertaken on a machine.

These five dangers are always present in every manufacturing facility but can be effectively managed and the risks mitigated through intelligent and comprehensive safety procedures and devices.