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MSHA's Safety Targets Program
Block Against Motion
Do's and Don'ts

    The Do's
  • Maintain good communication between co-workers. Make sure those around you know your intentions
  • Observe and follow all warning labels and signs on equipment
  • Ensure that there is adequate space to work
  • Examine work areas during the shift for hazards that may be created as a result of the work being performed
  • Always verify persons are aware and in a safe location before energizing or moving equipment and components
  • Always be aware of your location in relation to machine parts that can move
  • Conduct pre-operational checks to identify any defects that may affect the safe operation of equipment before it is placed into service
    The Don'ts
  • Do not assume that equipment operators know that you are in the vicinity - Always be aware of your location in relation to mobile equipment
  • Do not proceed until all safety concerns are adequately resolved if potential hazards or prescribed procedures are unclear
  • Never work in the fall path of objects/materials of massive weights having the potential of becoming off-balanced while in the upright position
    The Do's
  • Always follow established work procedures from your company and equipment manufacturers. If you're unsure how to safely perform a task, ask your supervisor
  • Make sure that you use the proper tools and equipment for the job
  • Consult and follow the manufacturer's recommended safe work procedures for the maintenance task
  • Securely block equipment and components against hazardous motion at all times while performing maintenance work
  • Exercise extreme caution if the equipment being blocked has multiple degrees of movement of freedom because some instability modes may not be obvious
  • Conduct a Risk Assessment to evaluate all tasks and identify potential hazards before performing maintenance work
  • Use a lifting device compatible with the load being lifted and block equipment against hazardous motion before starting any repairs
    The Don'ts
  • Never work or travel in the articulation area of equipment without engaging the steering frame lock or without using another effective means of preventing motion if the lock cannot be used
  • Never loosen hydraulic hoses or components without first determining if they may be holding something up or trapping pressure
  • Do not work in pinch points where inadvertent movement could cause injury
    The Do's
  • Turn the engine off, place the transmission in gear, set the park brake and always make sure the equipment is securely blocked against motion before performing repair or maintenance work
  • Set truck parking brakes and block the wheels or turn them into a bank or berm when parking any truck on a grade
  • Maintain equipment braking systems in good repair and adjustment
  • Lower the bucket or blade to the ground when parking mobile equipment
    The Don'ts
  • Never leave mobile equipment unattended unless the controls are placed in the park position and the parking brake is set
  • Never use a steering column-mounted "dump brake" (a system that allows for all brakes to be applied and neutralized through the transmission by pressing a single button) for parking
  • Do not depend on hydraulic systems to hold mobile equipment stationary during repairs or maintenance
  • Do not permit unauthorized persons to be in cabs of mobile equipment
  • Never place yourself between rail cars/equipment unless positive stop blocks are in place
  • Do not push rail cars, PULL them
    The Do's
  • Before working under a raised bucket door, ensure that the material used for blocking against hazardous motion is adequate and properly installed
  • Block equipment components against all possible motion/movement resulting from a sudden release of energy
  • Ensure that blocking material is competent, substantial, and adequate to support and stabilize the load
  • Mechanical blocking can be achieved by installing a hinged prop leg
    The Don'ts
  • Do not set jacks or blocking material directly on soft ground - Ensure that you have an adequate bearing surface to prevent sinking into the ground if a load is suddenly applied
  • Never block with steel on steel or depend on hydraulics to support a load
    The Do's
  • Consider all possible hazards and devise methods to safely complete the task before performing a materials handling job
  • Use a positive means to prevent objects/materials from falling or moving when working with or on extremely heavy objects/materials placed in an upright position
The Don'ts
  • Do not remove the bands securing bundles of materials or supplies until the bundles are placed in a position that prevents the materials or supplies from falling when the bands are removed
  • Never work in the fall path of materials or supplies of massive weights having the potential of becoming off-balanced while in the upright position
  • Do not walk or stand under suspended loads
    The Do's
  • Miners at dimension stone operations should use procedures that eliminates the need to perform tasks near cut blocks and utilize supports that effectively secures cut blocks
  • Place cut stone blocks that are being examined or marked in an open area away from other blocks and on level ground
  • Use lagging, wedges or other suitable support to support cut blocks on uneven surfaces
    The Don'ts
  • Do not perform any work in an area where material that has the potential to fall is properly and securely anchored

Block against Motion    Block against Motion

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