November 2020
Volume 72    Issue 11

Guarding the underside; the return side of a conveyor poses serious risks of its own

Mining Engineering , 2020, Vol. 72, No. 11, pp. 23-23
Marshall, Daniel


Most operations personnel who work on or near conveyors are aware of the need to guard potentially hazardous components such as gears, chains, pulleys and drive shafts. Unfortunately, less attention is often paid to the return side of a conveyor, which poses serious risks of its own. Unguarded return rollers capable of being contacted by workers, are particularly hazardous, as they create in-running nip points across the entire width of the belt. These hazards can draw workers into areas where they can be trapped. Return rollers are also dangerous because they represent a falling component hazard if their mounting hardware breaks. Installed underneath the returning belt, they are often not easily seen and may remain uninspected for long periods of time.

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