In 2014, an employee working in the Cut Size Line production department of our Syktyvkar mill was seriously injured when she was hit by a forklift working in the repulper area. Following investigations, we identified a number of safety measures to reduce the risk of a similar incident ever happening again.
A key priority was to enable forklift drivers to detect workers in the danger zone around the vehicle during operation. We chose a Britishmade system, called ZONE SAFE, which fixes a detector to the cab. The detector can be programmed to alert the driver with a light and sound should anyone carrying a transponder card enter the danger zone of up to 9m radius. Secondly, we planned safe pedestrian areas and installed solid barriers, including electrical doors with traffic lights, to keep pedestrians and vehicles a safe distance apart. We also installed an access system to the Cut Size Line, whereby only employees who have been trained and are carrying entry cards and ZONE SAFE transponder cards can gain access to the area.
Based on the success of the project, we have now applied the measures to all areas of the mill where forklift trucks operate. A similar system has been developed for woodyard loaders with survelliance cameras installed in cabs to improve driver visibility and a detection zone of 25m. Next steps in 2019 will see the installation of ZONE SAFE in the forestry nursery stock area and application of site access control systems in other areas. Since installing the equipment, the risk has been engineered out and we have experienced no further incidents.