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Machinery & Facilities


This section covers the different safety aspects of using machinery and maintaining plant and equipment in the workplace. Employers should consider how their workers use machinery, and have adequate maintenance arrangements in place to ensure it remains safe to use.

There is also specific advice on lifting equipment and carrying out vehicle repairs.

If machines are controlled by programmable electronic systems, changes to any programmes should be carried out by a competent person (someone who has the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to carry out the work safely). It is good practice if employers’ keep a record of such changes and check to ensure they have been made properly.

Why is machinery safety important?

Moving machinery can cause injuries in many ways:

  • People can be struck and injured by moving parts of machinery or ejected material. Parts of the body can also be drawn in or trapped between rollers, belts and pulley drives.
  • Sharp edges can cause cuts and severing injuries, sharp-pointed parts can cause stabbing or puncture the skin, and rough surface parts can cause friction or abrasion.
  • People can be crushed, both between parts moving together or towards a fixed part of the machine, wall or other object, and two parts moving past one another can cause shearing.
  • Parts of the machine, materials and emissions (such as steam or water) can be hot or cold enough to cause burns or scalds, and electricity can cause electrical shock and burns.
  • Injuries can also occur due to machinery becoming unreliable and developing faults or when machines are used improperly through inexperience or lack of training.

Make sure the machine is:

  • Safe for any work that has to be done when setting up, during normal use, when clearing blockages, when carrying out repairs for breakdowns, and during planned maintenance;
  • Properly switched off, isolated or locked off before taking any action to remove blockages, clean or adjust the machine;
  • Electrical, hydraulic or pneumatic power supplies;
  • Badly designed safeguards. These may be inconvenient to use or easily overridden, which could encourage their workers to risk injury and break the law. If this is happening employers should find out why workers are doing it and take appropriate action to deal with the reasons/causes.

Preventing access to dangerous parts

Employers should think about how they can make a machine safe. The measures they use to prevent access to dangerous parts should be in the following order. In some cases it may be necessary to use a combination of these measures:

  • Use fixed guards (e.g. secured with screws or nuts and bolts) to enclose the dangerous parts, whenever practical. Use the best material for these guards – plastic may be easy to see through but may easily be damaged. Where you use wire mesh or similar materials, make sure the holes are not large enough to allow access to moving parts.
  • If fixed guards are not practical, they should use other methods, e.g. interlock the guard so that the machine cannot start before the guard is closed and cannot be opened while the machine is still moving. In some cases, trip systems such as photoelectric devices, pressure-sensitive mats or automatic guards may be used if other guards are not practical.
  • Where guards cannot give full protection, use jigs, holders, push sticks etc. if it is practical to do so.
  • Employers should control any remaining risk by providing the worker/operator with the necessary information, instruction, training, supervision and appropriate safety equipment.


While it takes exceptional people to deliver superior machining services to industries such as medical, pharmaceutical, food processing and aerospace, these experts cannot perform at the highest level without the facilities and equipment they need to get the job done. A key reason Astro Machine Works has remained at the forefront of our industry is our constant focus on upgrading our machining facilities and equipment. We view it as a smart investment that will yield the best long-term results for our company – and our customers.

We have taken the same care in the design and maintenance of our facilities as we do with the equipment and parts we build. This has resulted in efficient work flow, a safe and comfortable working environment for our valued team members and plenty of room for additional growth. about world-class machining facilities. 

We’re Also a Full-Service Reverse Engineering Facility

Our facility houses the latest, most technologically advanced CNC lathe machining equipment that ensures maximum precision when manufacturing intricate parts. We also have state-of-the-art CNC milling machinery that allows us to produce parts featuring complex or unique shapes in the most timely, cost-effective manner, including just about any 2D or 3D shape.

If you’re having difficulty finding obsolete OEM replacement parts for your machinery, Astro Machine Works can help. Our facility includes FarmoArm, a cutting-edge coordinate measuring machine that enables us to perform precise reverse engineering to produce the high-quality replacement part you need. Just supply us with your worn-out or defective part, and we’ll use FarmoArm to conduct comprehensive 3D scanning. This allows us to generate accurate CAD drawings so we can create a fully functioning replicate that will exceed your quality and performance expectations.

Why Choose Astro Machine Works?

 We can work with you to create a detailed custom machine solution that will solve your problem quickly and efficiently. Our facility also contains all the tools, equipment and machinery required for essential production processes such as welding and fabricating and complete mechanical assembly, as well as secondary processes such as plating, anodizing and painting. We can even perform custom machining of parts and components.