A printing press produces printed materials as its normal
production function. The printing press's rollers have to be cleaned periodically during
the work shift to ensure quality control.
In this scenario, the press is not shut down for the cleaning
operation. The printing press is energized and its rollers continue to spin at a very high
speed. In order for employees to clean the rollers they must bypass the printing press's
machine guards, and use rags to clean the rollers. This exposes them to serious, ingoing
nip point hazards created by the rollers. Severe laceration or amputated fingers could
result if the rag or an employee's hand were to get caught in the rollers or in an
area between the rollers and a fixed part of the machine.
Although the employer has a lockout/tagout program for servicing and/or maintenance of
the printing presses, for this particular cleaning operation the employer believes that
lockout/tagout procedures do not need to be implemented. According to the employer, this
cleaning operation is exempt from lockout/tagout requirements because it falls under the
minor servicing exemption and therefore the employer allows the equipment to remain
operating during the cleaning operation.
Remember, as stated above, the employees are still exposed to the hazardous energy of the printing press' during the cleaning operation.