Baling Accidents can be Prevented
Between 1992 and 2000, 34 workers died when crushed by the compacting
ram in baling or compacting machines, NIOSH recently reported.
Such machines are widely used in manufacturing and retail trade businesses
to compress cardboard, scrap metal, and other waste material for handling
and transport. To avoid becoming a statistic, NIOSH recommends:
- De-energizing balers and compactors when they are being unjammed,
maintained or repaired.
- Equipping balers and compactors with machine guards and safety interlocks
that will stop a machine if a worker attempts to gain access to the
- Requiring machine operators to account for the presence of coworkers
before activating equipment.
- Using platforms with stairs and railings near the opening of feed
chutes. This will provide safe access for clearing jams.
- Training employees to recognize the hazards of working with balers
- Banning employees under age 18 from servicing, loading, operating
or helping to operate balers and compactors, according to federal labor