Do you want to gamble on your fingers and toes (or worse!) every time you access a potentially dangerous machine?
Most people don’t.
Before an accident happens, there are safety measures that can drastically reduce the risk of injury. Safety switches make industrial safety a no-brainer for many machine builders, reducing human error with built-in protection. So what safety switches are right for your application?
Simple and Low Cost
A tongue-interlocking switch is a simple, affordable solution that doesn’t compromise on safety. A tongue actuator on the door of the machine forces disconnection in a switch attached to another door. When the door is opened, it physically pulls out the tongue and signals the machine to stop.
Best for Hazardous Locations
A trapped key system works best for hazardous locations as it forces the user to go through a series of steps to gain access. Sequential access can also remind the user to be more self-aware as it takes time and deliberate action to pass through the system.
The interlocking may be situated outside of the hazardous location to buffer the user with distance, and some trapped key systems do not require voltage for additional safety.
Robust Safety for High Risk Machines
Guard-locking switches are the industrial safety measure of choice for high risk machine access, such as when machines require a certain amount of time to reach a full stop. A guard-locking switch does not release its hold until defined conditions are met, like a predetermined delay, to give the machine enough time to shut down safely.
Guard-locking switches can also stay locked until power returns, as in cases where the machine temporarily loses power and workers may be tempted to approach machinery that could restart at any time.
Choosing a Safety Switch Solution
Many factors go into choosing the right safety switch for your needs, and there are a few more questions to consider while you’re weighing your options. Once you’ve matched a type of switch to your application, you’ll need an appropriate electrical enclosure to protect the switch itself. Make sure that your enclosure meets the right NEMA rating for its location and function.
If you’re seeking a custom control panel partner for your safety project, PanelShop.com can help. We are a single source provider that designs and builds panels right here in the United States, with customers all over the world. Submit your project information to us for your free quote, and our experienced staff will work closely with you to ensure your project’s success.