TYRE fitting in the mining industry is a tough job, with wheel and tyre combinations weighing many tonnes, bolts needing to be torqued to hundreds of foot-pounds and some fittings located metres off the ground.
Fitters are often required to hold heavy tooling overhead in awkward positions for wheel, tyre and suspension maintenance.
Despite following industry best practice, worker fatigue and Lost Time Injuries (LTIs) are still serious issues that need to be mitigated in the tyre bays of modern mining operations.
Following an unfortunate bout of injuries and fatalities, the mining industry is pushing for better safety and compliance, prompting many mines to rethink existing work practices and focus on making the right tools for the job available.
PUTTING profits before safety is only a short term gain when compared to the cost (both emotionally and financially) of serious injuries and deaths. It is well documented that physical fatigue plays a large part in elevating the risk of workplace accidents and incidents. Fatigued employees often have lessened alertness resulting in slower reactions, decreased motor skills and poor judgement.
THE best tools in the world are usually designed by people who see a need to improve the efficiency or safety of their own job. Nivek Industries’ ingenious new Lift Assist 40 tool manipulator arm is the perfect example of a workplace solution based on real world experience. It was designed and built in Australia by Nivek’s founder Kevin Cant, who was a maintenance fitter for several years. The tool manipulator is designed to take the weight out of a wide range of tooling, including rattle guns, impact drivers, pneumatic torque guns (including Rad and J-guns,) air sanders and more.
MOST fitters will say that field repairs, without the help of forklifts, overhead cranes and other mechanical aides, are the most dangerous and taxing on the body.