MANUFACTURING: Planer head moves despite being locked out, worker suffers finger amputation

Safety Alert Type: 
Northern Interior Planer Mill
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Company Name: 
BC Forest Safety Council
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

In an effort to control combustible dust, a manufacturing facility in the northern interior region increased the ventilation rate on their planer.

The planer was locked out, but due to the increased flow rate of the ventilation system, there was still an uncontrolled energy source present.

The increased air flow caused the opposite head on the planer to rotate. This situation contributed to a finger amputation at this particular manufacturing plant.

The employer did not do a re-evaluation of the planer for hazards after the modifications to the ventilation system were made.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Consider this potential risk and re-evaluate planer lockout programs if the facility has increased the air flow through the ventilation systems.

Video link that shows a planer head rotating despite being locked out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQRiVgupLn4

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Gary Banys, BC Forest Safety Council 1-877-741-1060

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