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Safety: A New Beginning

TC Industries, Inc. is beginning a new journey to improve the way we think about safety and the overall safety performance in Crystal Lake. Changing a culture does not happen overnight, nor does making all of the necessary improvements to help us reduce exposure that may exist today. We do, however, have commitment from management to start making these necessary improvements.

During the week of April 23, Malter Associates, Inc. was in Crystal Lake to perform a 5 day safety assessment. The assessment included review of our facilities; including machinery, equipment, process, policies and instructions for compliance with OSHA General Industry Standards as well as ANSI (American National Standards institute) and the NFPA (national Fire Protection Agency). A comprehensive report will be provided which will include a list of recommendations for the corrective actions.

Our engineering group participated in a webinar on ANSI’s Prevention Through Design Standard and are doing a good job evaluating and identifying best methods for eliminating or controlling hazards during new equipment design (i.e. WC 143). Additional training will be planned for all employees, including specific training for maintenance and supervisory personnel to help them better understand what certain requirements are. The more we can educate out employees to better recognize non compliant situations, the better off we will all be. We will need commitment from all employees to help correct situations that may exist today or may arise in the future. As it is with quality, safety is not something we just pass on to the safety folks and let them handle. It is the responsibility of each and every employee.

Additional safety improvements that have been recently completed as well as other projects currently taking place to help identify and improve safety and man/machine separation are as follows:

  • Through safety risk assessments (completed by ASA) of all of the straightening presses have been completed in PSC. A project has been approved for one press to better guard as well as to provide improved material handling.
  • MPD & PSC “Hands Off” 6 Sigma projects to help identify the areas where employees do have to manually handle product and to come up with improvements that can be made to reduce exposure.
  • Installation of a robot in WC’s 143 and 144.
  • Robotic welding for base edges assemblies.
  • Addition of a Safety Engineer.
  • Additional guarding for the Mapleton furnace.
  • Improved material handling for PSC #4 furnace line.

Please continue to use the T Card system to help us identify opportunities for safety improvements.