Cement production prompts safety invention
The bags of Boral cement and dry mix products resting on pallets in your local hardware store that would be ideal for building a letterbox or installing a new clothesline have a backstory almost totally reliant on specialised machinery.
The automated production is a hypnotic industrial dance featuring a swinging robotic arm selecting an empty product bag, winding conveyor belts, quick-fill bag machines, palletisers and shrink-wrap applicators that are contained at Boral Cement’s packaged products production plant in Maldon, 90 kilometres south of Sydney.
It is a dance that also includes the shredding and recycling of any bag that doesn't make its 20-kilogram weight standard and rebags the emptied product.
In what can be a dusty environment, primarily due to the nature of the product, Boral Cement Production Operator Nathan Halliday came up with an ingenious solution to provide a cleaner workplace for everyone to function.
To help prevent dust escaping from the facility's three packing machines and improve the effectiveness of the de-dusting system, Nathan built and installed screens on the top half of each of the packers using wooden frames and plastic wrap used for on our pallets.
Boral Cement Executive General Manager Rajeev Ramankutty said Boral was committed to Zero Harm in the workplace and supportive of the innovative initiatives of employees.
“We constantly challenge ourselves to transform our thinking and habits to achieve Zero Harm at work and also encourage our employees to adopt safe practices at home,” Mr Ramankutty said. “The safety of our people and the communities in which we operate is paramount and this includes focusing on their health and wellbeing.
"Nathan's resourcefulness shows a true connection to his colleagues. He has a real sense of ownership of this issue and that’s a great outcome. People are thinking outside the box to make their lives easier.”