Take Control of Hazard Prevention and Guarding Workers Safety

By on May 22, 2018

Take Control of Hazard Prevention and Guarding Workers Safety

NEIL KINDER, CEO Kinder Australia highlights the importance of installing conveyor safety guards on materials handling sites.


In recent years, Zero Harm is fast becoming a high priority and vision for many bulk materials handling operators trying to make the workplace safer for workers, this also extends to protecting the environment and surrounding communities from harm.

Each year, serious, irreversible injuries and even death can  be attributed to unsafe and dangerous plant machinery and equipment. The most common injuries sustained by workers can be directly linked to poor and inadequate safety guarding. “Installing safety guards on machines and equipment ensures that workers are protected by way of preventing and reducing access to machinery high risk hazard areas”, explains Neil Kinder, CEO – Kinder Australia Pty Ltd.

From WorkSafe Victoria’s perspective, 106 visits to quarries were conducted during June to September 2017 and over the same period Plant Guarding was observed by WorkSafe Victoria as critical areas targeted for improvement at each visit conducted.

Overall, a total of 44 Plant Guarding improvement notices were issued by WorkSafe Victoria, representing 39% of all notices issued followed by Traffic Management/Site Security with 32 improvement notices issued.

The Australian Standard for Conveyor Safety Requirements requires Safety guarding installed to be compliant with AS/NZS 4204.3610:2015 industry standard. Kinder Australia’s K-Protector® Return Idler Guard is industry compliant and a practical and safe solution to providing roller nip point protection.

K-Protector® Return Idler Guard’s release mechanism is compliant and can easily and simply allow the safety guard to pass through the end plates for maintenance. The unit is designed to minimise the potential for injury, operators should in all situations adhere to safe work practice procedures and avoid adjustments to unlocked machinery.

“Conveyor safety guards do not have to be complicated, nor interfere with productivity.” Kinder said. “Once installed, the guard should be kept clean and inspected regularly.”


Our customer in North East Victoria operates a large-scale gravel and sand plant, site maintenance teams reported ongoing guard maintenance due to the awkward and restricted access to many of the areas that required pinch point protection. As well as protecting the workers from pinch point injuries, the maintenance team looked to implement a fully compliant guarding design mechanism that would reduce cleaning downtime, and therefore create opportunities for more proactive maintenance tasks within other parts of the plant. The plant operator turned to Kinder’s K-Protector® Return Idler Guard to also help reduce the potential for injury as this was high on the agenda.

Positive feedback following on from the safety guarding installation were reported, with site maintenance team “Pleased in the decision to install the K-Protector® Return Idler Guard. They were easy and simple to fix to the existing brackets of our conveyor system”. “These guards have a slide out panel, they are really easy to pull apart and remove any carry back material that the guard has captured”.

Kinder says “Little consideration is given to ongoing guard maintenance, making it a user-friendly routine, and most importantly not being a complicated maintenance health hazard in itself.”

Safety guarding can be a significant investment for material handling operations, however by incorporating guarding in your ongoing maintenance program in the long term guarantees both worker safety, OHS compliance and extended wear life of equipment. Kinder Australia suggests that an effective guarding maintenance program would check for some crucial considerations such as:

  • Properly installing safety guarding and ensuring all fasteners are secure;
  • Guards should be in good working condition, or consider replacement;
  • Guards should be free of corrosion. Replacement of worn or corroded parts as needed will extend the life of the guard.

Contact Kinder Australia Pty Ltd

Ph: +61 38587 9111

Email: conveyorsolutions@kinder.com.au


About Gavin Moreira

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