GuardSmart 132 – Safe Guard it Right the First Time


It is common for companies to require three guarding quotes before a purchase order can be issued. This is to ensure that they are getting the best price for the goods purchased. We believe the question that should be asked is what will be the Return on Investment (ROI)?

  1. Will the guard properly protect the workers?
  2. Is the guard designed with accessibility in mind? Will it encourage or discourage proper safety procedures during the maintenance of equipment behind the guard? What are the ongoing costs associated with removing and reinstalling guards?
  3. How often will the guards need to be replaced? Were the guards built to last or built as a quick-fix?
  4. Are the guards compliant? If not, they will eventually need to be replaced. What fines can you face due to noncompliance and improper guarding?
  5. Are the guards ergonomically friendly? A poorly designed or heavy guard can cause injuries and risk long-term compensation costs
  6. Will you get after-market support and can you order replacement guards easily?

Simply put – purchasing the least expensive guard is an expense that could cost you more money over time. Purchasing an alternate guard that might be more expensive but well designed and user-friendly is an asset that will save you money in the long run.
If you have made the decision to purchase safety guarding, do it right the first time and GuardSmart

Your Stories:

Inadequate guarding and safety lapses blamed for the death of a miner. According to MSHA, a 42-year-old miner with over 23 years of mining experience was fatally injured while attempting to shovel loose gravel from under a beltline. [The worker] became entangled in the bolts of a roller shaft of the moving conveyor belt drive tandem roller for the section belt. There was a chain-link fence around the belt drive, but there was an opening that allowed miners to stand between the belt roller and the fence while working. The victim was positioned here, between a guard and the conveyor belt drive when he came in contact with the shaft of the belt drive tandem roller. The guards around this belt drive were inadequate because they were not securely fastened and could be easily removed. The accident occurred because the mine operator did not have effective programs, policies, or procedures in place to ensure that belt drives were adequately guarded. The inadequate area guard created a hazardous condition that allowed a hazardous practice for miners working on, and/or being in close proximity to, the moving belt drive without first de-energizing it and locking it against the motion.

Helpful Links, Sources & References
Jan 2017 | MSHA | Fatal Powered Haulage Accident | retrieved from
Jul 2017 | Herald Leader | Eastern Kentucky coal min death blamed on safety lapses | retrieved from  

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