Abrasive wheels are commonly found in industry, both in fixed pedestal/bench grinders and in portable grinding tools. They are a versatile tool, capable of cutting, shaping, smoothing and cleaning a wide variety of materials. By their very nature, part of the wheel surface has to be exposed in order to carry out work, so proper training and competence is essential when using these pieces of equipment.
What is the biggest danger?
With the wheel rotating at several thousand revolutions per minute, any breakdown of the wheel material could lead to fragments being ejected at speed, leading to potentially serious injuries. If the abrasive wheel is worn, damaged, clogged with the wrong type of material debris or used incorrectly, it could overheat and burst in use.
Other factors should also be considered, such as the state of the guarding around the wheel and the position of the tool rest.
Why is training necessary?
The use of an abrasive wheel falls under the Provision of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER), which requires employers to adequately train employees in the proper methods of using equipment, as well understanding the associated risks and precautions. Proper training allows users to recognise if the equipment is safe to use, know how to use the equipment safely, and understand what to do if any potential problems arise.
How can Waterside help?
Waterside offers a half day course that covers both the theory and practice of working with abrasive wheels. It is offered as an open course at Waterside, and can also be delivered on client sites. Click here for the main course outline.
For upcoming open courses, see our Course Calendar. For delivering a course at client premises, call us on 01744 616 837 or use the Contact Us form to get in touch.