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Auto Parts Manufacturer Fined $75,000 for Injury in Robot Cell

A young worker at an auto parts manufacturer’s facility was working on a production line that consisted of four machining centres and a fenced-off ‘robot cell’ containing a large robotic arm. When a jam occurred in the robot cell, he entered it to clear the jam. When he did so, a steel rod activated, injuring his hand. An MOL investigation found that the machine wasn’t shut down or locked out when the worker entered to clear the jam. The manufacturer pleaded guilty to an OHS violation and was fined $75,000 [Vehcom Manufacturing Ltd., Govt. News Release, Nov. 13, 2012]. (Here’s information on how to comply with the OHS requirements for industrial robots.)