Hydraulic Hose Safety
Hydraulics are used on a wide variety of machinery, from pedestrian operated machines to large earthmoving and other equipment.
Hydraulic system components run at significant pressures and temperatures. Hydraulics pose hazards associated with heat and stored hydraulic energy, as well as crush hazards such as falling loads where hydraulic systems fail.
This Guide is focused on inspecting for hydraulic hose safety using Plant Assessor.
Guidance material available in Australia and around the world has steadily been moving away from prescriptive requirements such as how to fasten, shield and safe distances from operators.
The current Australian Standard for Safety of Machinery has the following guidance – AS4024.1201:2014 clause 6.2.10 Pneumatic and hydraulic hazards Pneumatic and hydraulic equipment of machinery shall be designed so that – No hazardous fluid jet or sudden hazardous movement of the hose (whiplash) results from leakage or component failures.
Safe Work Australia specifically include High Pressure Fluid in the Hazards Checklist in the “Managing Risks of Plant in the Work Place Code of Practice”
There major potential risks posed by hydraulics include:
1. INJECTION INJURY
Injection injuries occur when a jet of hydraulic fluid pierces the skin and enters the blood stream.
This generally occurs at close range and requires the fluid in question to be under pressure.
Injection injuries are a potential hazard on machines where the hydraulic hoses run in close proximity to the operator, such as on a vehicle-loading crane.
It should be noted that injection injuries can often result in amputation of the injured body part, so extreme care must be exercised.
The following link, courtesy of SafeQuarry.com is a toolbox talk template on hydraulic injection injuries. Click here to view article