This month Brady Europe ­answers a question on safe maintenance ­procedures. My facility – in common with many I suspect- has a great deal of electrical equipment accumulated over the years. We are ­developing maintenance and safety plans – do you have any tips?

Certainly! Planned safety and maintenance is the absolute key to significant savings in both downtime and injuries.

I guarantee that an efficient maintenance plan together with an easy to use system will save you money in terms of lost production time and protect your employees. It really is a win-win situation and it is relatively simple to implement.

The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work is in the second year of its ‘Healthy Workplaces’ campaign, highlighting maintenance procedures amongst others and the HSE recommends that all electrical equipment should be visually checked on a regular basis for signs of deterioration and damage, the table below gives a suggested guide to intervals.

During maintenance, an energy specific lockout system is essential, it sounds obvious but always ensure the system you choose is relevant for that purpose. Here at Brady we have just launched a small, but significant addition to our lockout range as a direct response to customers needs. On the face of it, it’s a small padlock but as with everything we do, it’s so much more. Firstly, the reason it’s small is to provide a lighterweight product for some of the latest smaller lockout devices but its most important quality relating to an electrical lockout system is its material which is non-conductive with a spark-resistant lock body.

Compact padlocks

I try to steer clear of mentioning products in details, but the point I am trying to make here is that you really need to pay attention to detail, even when sourcing what seems a small link in the chain.

Our compact padlocks have had all the Brady R&D poured into them to give extra benefits to ensure a much safer option, for example, the insulated key chamber protects workers from shock when the key is inserted, the body is ribbed to make gripping easy and it has enhanced impact resistance to stand up to the demands of harsh environments.