- Prior to any work being undertaken, permission to carry out such work at the site will be obtained from the person in charge or his nominee.
- Personnel will, as required, wear safety helmets, boots, hearing protection and any other ‘personal protective equipment’ as per site rules.
- On some sites it may be necessary to carry personal gas monitors. These will be issued by the authorised site personnel, and MUST at all times be worn in the upper chest area on the outside of any clothing (ie in the zone of air that is being breathed). The user will familiarise himself with the operation of the monitor prior to using. If the monitor at any time ‘alarms’ then the user will withdraw immediately from that area to a designated fresh air base and report the alarm to the person in charge or his nominee.
- Personnel will at all times carry out instructions regarding safety which may from time to time be given.
- All personnel are only to carry out tasks for which they have been trained and deemed competent. If in doubt, seek clarification from your line manager.
- Prior to data being collected from individual items of plant, the operator (if not remotely operated) of that plant will be informed, and permission to continue sought.
- The operator (if applicable) of the plant will be informed once the collection of data is complete.
- Following completion of any work the person in charge (or his nominee), is to be informed of such, prior to leaving the site.
- Any problems, or safety concerns found during the work undertaken that require urgent attention are to be reported to the person in charge (or his nominee) before leaving the site.
- Collection of data requires plant to be operational, and for the collector to be in the vicinity of moving machinery. Noise, slips, trips and falls, dust and moving parts are the primary risks. These risks are minimised by:
- Adhering to method statements at all times.
- Guarding, fencing and notices to be observed at all times.
- Personal positioning away from potential traffic or spillages.
- Reporting of work progress to the machinery operator.
- The wearing of personal protective equipment as locally required, normally safety boots, helmet, ear defenders and high visibility clothing as a minimum.
- Industrial training, with updates (Safety Pass Alliance and/or Client, Contractor National Safety Group schemes).
- Site induction to highlight local rules and risks that may be particular to individual sites.
- Personal awareness at all times that work is being carried out in a potentially dangerous environment.
The collection of vibration data from general plant
- The collection of vibration data necessitates the plant being in a working condition, and as such measurement points are positioned to keep personnel in a safe position. Accelerometers are attached (either by screw fitting or magnetically) to the designated measurement point, the inter-joining cable is then plugged into a portable data collector and vibration data is collected. The instrumentation is then removed, and fixed to the next measurement point. Guards are not to be removed from moving machinery.
- Measurement points which are by necessity behind guards will normally be monitored by the installation of remote accelerometers with cables fitted bringing the measurement point to a safe place.
- The use of ‘tube spanners’ of appropriate length to allow the attachment of magnetically mounted instrumentation to machinery through mesh guarding will be discussed on site prior to use, and only used with the agreement of site safety personnel that their use does not give rise to any appreciable risk.
- Occasionally, it may be necessary to monitor equipment with restricted access (for initial investigative work for example). In this case the machine is to be stopped, isolated and locked off (a permit and the assistance of site personnel will be required for this). Any guards can then be removed, temporary instrumentation attached with an appropriate length of cable to enable personnel to complete data collection from a safe place. Any guards will be re-fitted before the machine is restarted to collect data. On completion, the machine is to be stopped, isolated and locked off to enable the instrumentation to be removed. At any time whilst working behind guards the plant is to be isolated and the operator kept informed of action being taken.
The collection of thermal images from general plant
- The collection of thermal imaging data from equipment normally necessitates the plant being in a working condition. Data will only be recorded from such positions as to keep personnel in a safe position. Guards are not to be removed from moving machinery.
- Thermal images are collected using a ‘video’ type camera, personal positioning and awareness must at all times be carried out with respect of the reduced visual capability of the user during operation of the camera.
- Survey areas which are behind electrical panel doors will be monitored in a controlled manner. A qualified electrical member of the clients staff (authorised to open panel doors with the power on) will supervise the opening, surveying of the panel, and the subsequent closure of the panel door. Data will only be collected from outside the confines of the panel at a safe working distance from any live connections (with consideration of the voltages within the panel).
The collection of oil samples from general plant
- Oil samples should be taken from a representative portion of the lubricant, and as such the equipment being sampled should either be running or recently stopped.
- Access for obtaining samples may be through a specially designated sampling point, filler caps, or occasionally from level plugs. Care must be taken not to allow spillages of the lubricant.
- The plant will be at working temperature, and care must be exercised as oil may be hot enough to burn and scold.
- The sampler’s bare skin should not be allowed to come into contact with the oil, and sampling syringes, tubing and gloves should be used to prevent contamination of the skin.
- Vampire sampling syringes allow the sample bottle to be attached to the syringe, and the oil to be drawn up through a length of tubing inserted into the oil.
- Conventional ‘medical’ type sampling syringes draw the oil up through a sample tube, the oil is then ejected into a sample bottle. Care is needed handling the bottles, as the oil may be hot, and bottles and tops may become difficult to handle with use.
- Samples must only be taken from chambers vented to atmosphere (unless specialist equipment is being used to carry out pressurised sampling). If it is at all suspected that the oil chamber is under pressure then the plant must be stopped, and the pressure allowed to dissipate before sampling proceeds. If in doubt clarification must be sought from site personnel.
- Removal of guards to obtain samples must be carried out with the equipment isolated and locked off, with a written permit or authorisation to work.
- Avoid contact of used oil with the skin, any spillages must be cleaned from the skin at the earliest opportunity.
Maintenance of Lubrication Systems
- If the removal of guards is required to work on lubrication systems, the equipment must be isolated and locked off to prevent movement, stored energy must be dissipated, and a written permit or authorisation to work issued.
- Maintenance of systems not requiring the removal of guards, and that is away from any moving parts, may only be carried out without the isolation of nearby equipment when positioning of the person carrying out such duties does not give rise to any danger.
- Care must be taken during maintenance that all spares, and redundant equipment is kept tidy in the workplace, so that it will not foul nearby equipment or present a tripping hazard.
- The power to lubrication systems (either battery or low voltage AC) should be removed from individual systems prior to carrying out maintenance work.
- The person carrying out maintenance should be aware that ‘gas triggered’ auto-lubrication pots will expel lubricant under (low) pressure if they are disconnected prior to them becoming entirely empty.
- Care must be taken to release the pressure of the lubrication lines prior to splitting any connecting tubes and fittings.
- All spillages of lubricant should be cleared up prior to completion of the work.
- When changing lubrication cartridges, care must be taken not to allow contamination of the lubrication system, and to ensure the safe disposal of the empty containers.
- All pipework should be so attached that it does not cause a hazard to surrounding equipment or personnel who may be passing the area.