January 29, 2020

A Step-By-Step Guide to Drill Press Safety

A drill press is a commonly used tool across industrial workplaces. However, if this machine is used incorrectly or inappropriately, it can create major risks for the operator or others within the facility. So the question is—how can you ensure proper usage of your drill press to improve employee safety and efficiency?

With the right training, procedures, and machine safety solutions, you can significantly reduce risks associated with your drill press operations. Here’s a step-by-step guide to drill press safety and improved workplace productivity to align your team for success.

Step 1: Conduct Proper Training

Every year, thousands of workers are injured on the job due to a lack of adequate training. Training is one of the most important tools for safety in industrial and manufacturing workplaces. Without training, your employees won’t know how to operate the drill press correctly—or follow the safety rules and procedures necessary for your workplace.

By investing in drill press training, you empower your operators to recognize hazards and understand safety practices proactively. Regular training sessions can also ensure that safety is always top of mind for your team. So take the time to refresh your drill press operators on proper steps to follow; it can make all the difference. 

Step 2: Set Safety Protocols and Procedures

As a company in the world of industrial operations, you understand the importance of maintaining safety protocols and procedures. It’s also required by law to follow rules and standards set by OSHA regarding safety and health. Taking the time to review and update your safety procedures will help ensure overall safety around your drill press machines—and your facility at large. 

While it’s extremely important to have company-specific safety procedures, there are also a few general safety practices that your operators should be aware of. Make sure your team understands these drill press safety essentials: 

  • Wear appropriate clothing and gear, such as safety glasses

  • Make sure the start/stop button is within easy reach of the operator

  • Know the controls

  • Always operate the machine correctly

  • Make sure the drill bit or cutting tool is locked securely in the chuck

  • Never try to stop the drill chuck and spindle with your hands

  • Keep drill bits clean and sharp

  • Do not use tools in poor condition

  • Keep the working surface clean

Step 3: Encourage Proper Maintenance

When your machines and tools aren’t taken care of, they wear down faster—and create safety issues that put your employees and operators at risk. Using tools in poor condition can be dangerous, especially drill press machines. When you encourage proper maintenance, you effectively extend the life of your machines, while reducing the need to purchase new equipment. This effort also helps reduce any downtime associated with repairing damaged machines. 

Maintenance is a critical component to drill press safety. It helps prevent small issues from growing into large ones. On a regular basis, your operators should utilize a brush or vacuum to remove cuttings from your drill press, clean and return drill bits and other pieces to the correct locations, and clean the drill table and surrounding floor to make sure there aren’t any cuttings or scraps laying around. Those basic steps will go a long way in keeping your people and machines in great condition. 

Step 4: Use an OSHA-Compliant Drill Press Guard

Using a drill press guard is essential for secure operations—and required by OSHA. Flying debris created by a drill press can be extremely dangerous, but having a guard works to prevent those types of incidents from occurring. At Stronghold Safety Engineering, we offer a wide variety of drill press safety products, including guards. With the right safety shield, you can contain flying debris and create a safer, more productive workplace for your team.

Here are a few of Stronghold’s best drill press safety products:

Drill Press Safety Solutions from Stronghold

When you aren’t operating your machines safely, the risk of injuries and accidents skyrockets in your facilities. Your drill press machines are no exception—and even the most experienced operators can make mistakes. That’s why it’s so important to implement smart safety solutions to keep employees protected and minimize risks. 

At Stronghold, we know what it takes to create a safer workplace—and we’re passionate about helping you do the same. From industrial safety services to our selection of top safety products, we’ll help you identify areas in need of improvement and create a customized safety plan to address them. As your full-service safety partner, we’re here to implement solutions that will minimize risks and maximize productivity for your workplace. Contact Stronghold today to learn more about our high-quality safety solutions.