IMCA recently released its latest series of Safety Flashes, summarizing a case of a hand injury sustained during routine activities onboard.
During routine weekly checks, someone was performing tests for the emergency generator. As informed, he approached the generator to investigate an abnormal noise coming from the cooling fan, and his fingers were struck by the fan blades, and he sustained an injury to three of the fingers on his right hand.
- Unsafe, complacent behaviour;
- Lack of situational awareness – he placed his hands in an area with a partly exposed rotating part;
- The injured person was working alone;
- The fan was partly unprotected.
- Modifications were made to the fan guard of the emergency generator to avoid any possibility of touching the fan – and warning signs were posted;
- Further training for crew in “Situational Awareness”;
A fresh look at hand safety in general:
- Always be aware of where your hands are at all times;
- Always wear the appropriate PPE (including the right gloves for the job);
- Always identify all potential hand hazards (i.e., line of fire, pinch points) and take the appropriate mitigating steps during the planning stage of a job;
- Always use Risk Assessment and Toolbox Talk as appropriate in all tasks, whether formal or informal;
- Risk Assessment should be specific and identify the hazards and the Toolbox Talk should include discussion of the task at hand with those involved.
- If you don’t understand, ASK!! Don’t start the job, however simple or complex, unless you understand what you are supposed to be doing.