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Posted by Josephine Ayre on Jul 30, 2012 in Chippers

Chippers, although very useful across many different applications, are by no means harmless or foolproof machines and there are various potential hazards which the user needs to be aware of. Many new models of the machines come with safety guards as standard, but in the past many horrific accidents have occurred through misuse of a wood chipper.

  • Infeed Chute

One of the biggest sites of risk and danger in any wood processing machine is the infeed chute, which uses a conveyor belt or gravity to pull branches and other material into the chipper blades. Operators should always stand to the side of the infeed chute and wear cuffless gloves to avoid coming into contact with the deadly blades.

  • Flying Particles

While most injuries and fatalities associated with the use of chippers are the result of the operator getting caught in the machine, many others are caused by flying branches and wood debris hitting bystanders at a high force. Safety protection equipment such as glasses and feed guards can be used to prevent these accidents.

  • Loose Chipper Parts

Poorly maintained machines also pose a significant risk to operators and other people nearby. Protective hoods that come in contact with the blades are a particularly potent hazard and need to be checked regularly to ensure there is no risk of the part becoming dislodged from the chipper.

  • Lone Operators

The risk of injury and even death greatly increases when there is just one operator working with large wood shredders. Some smaller domestic models have been designed for safe and convenient usage by one person, but for more industrial machines it is necessary to have one person operating the controls, and another to manage the infeed chute.