One of the biggest concerns in many manufacturing facilities is the risk of employee injury, mainly when those employees work with and maneuver heavy loads. If this sounds familiar, and if you’re looking for ways to reduce that risk, your casters are a great place to start. Here are some of the ways you can reduce the risk of injuries and save your company money by simply choosing and installing the right caster wheels.
When an employee must move a heavy load, there are three times when he or she is most likely to experience an injury – when starting the movement, when maneuvering around an obstacle, and when stopping the movement. Though proper training is vital in reducing risk, employers can also do their part by using ergonomic casters designed to reduce friction between the wheel and the floor, thus making loads easier to start, stop, and turn. Less exertion means less injury, and this makes for a more productive workplace.
Now that you understand just how critical ergonomic casters can be in preventing the number one injury in the manufacturing industry – overexertion industries – it’s also easy to see just how much money you can save. Each time someone is injured on the job, it costs the employer money. Worker’s compensation claims drive up expenditures, and insurance claims can cause severe increases in premiums, making them virtually unaffordable. When your workplace is safer and there are fewer claims, the resulting dip in premiums can make a tremendous difference in your bottom line.
Aside from the ergonomic aspect of today’s high-tech casters, it’s also important to keep in mind that today’s casters are typically designed to be maintenance-free wherever possible. With traditional casters, it’s necessary to pull the cart or rack off the line to grease the casters’ bearings, which not only keeps them operational but is also required for improving their overall longevity. By making the switch to maintenance-free casters, this downtime is significantly reduced, and you will no longer need to pay employees to perform the tedious task of greasing bearings just to keep the wheels spinning freely.
Finally, thanks to the wide selection of materials in today’s casters, it’s also possible to choose a caster that has all the right features to suit your company’s environment. For example, if loads will move through areas where flammable vapors may exist, you will need materials that will not create sparks. If your employees frequently move unbalanced and asymmetrical loads, you will need a caster that is designed to prevent shifting through ample shock absorption and outstanding suspension.
Although casters may be little more than an afterthought in manufacturing facilities, it’s important to truly think them through and choose options with all the right features for your needs. When you use the right caster wheels from the outset, you can reduce employee exertion, spend less money on worker’s compensation and insurance claims, reduce maintenance and downtime, and enhance overall safety based on your unique environment.