Design and Project Manager

by Nov 29, 2023Machine Safety

The risk analysis and reduction process is the subject of several standards, including Canadian CSA Z432 and international ISO 12100. It is generally the same, whatever the field of application. In short, it boils down to:

  1. Identify a problem,
  2. Detail it as fully as possible,
  3. Quantify it with a risk estimate,
  4. Implement solutions to remedy the situation,
  5. Check the effectiveness of solutions and their maintenance.

The occupational health and safety regulation is largely based on this process. Indeed, section 177 of the new regulation in force since July 27, 2023 and published in the Gazette officielle of July 12, 2023 states:

“Appropriate means of safeguarding shall be selected in accordance with recognized principles and methodology of risk assessment and risk reduction, such as those advocated by Safeguarding of machinery, CSA Z432, and Safety of machinery – General principles of design – Risk assessment and risk reduction, ISO 12100 and in accordance with the conditions set forth in sections 181 to 185, as applicable.”

The starting point for any approach to securing a machine is therefore a risk analysis. If it’s well done, it will lay the foundations for the search for solutions. The search for solutions is, in fact, a design stage.

How do you know if a proposed solution is effective and complies with regulations?

During the design stage, several solutions may emerge. The designer or design team will make proposals to decision-makers and machine users. Operational and budgetary constraints will guide the choice, and may necessitate compromises. An engineer has a duty to comply with regulations and ensure worker safety. An engineer specialized in machine safety will be able to adapt the design to the constraints, while guaranteeing compliance with RROHS and standards. When properly mastered, the risk reduction approach often makes it possible to combine several measures to reduce residual risks, even before considering less effective measures that rely on human intervention, such as training and information, PPE, etc. This is particularly true, for example, in the case of a machine that has been installed on a site. This is particularly true, for example, in the case of a need for access during machine operation where, typically, an interlocked guard or light curtain alone becomes an obstacle. This increases the likelihood of illegally bypassing the safeguards in place. Complementary measures can be implemented to take account of all operational constraints.

Why a project manager?

Once a definitive solution has been chosen, the next step is to implement it. This involves purchasing components, manufacturing others and installing them. What’s more, in many cases the mechanical side (e.g. safeguards) and the electrical side (e.g. control system) have to be managed in parallel. This means potentially as many different suppliers and installers. The latter will undoubtedly need to visit the site to provide quotations tailored to the situation. What’s more, to get a fair price, it’s necessary to request several quotes. That means a lot of logistics and time.

Calling on a project manager who is used to managing industrial machine safeguarding projects is a considerable asset in ensuring that such a project reaches a successful conclusion. What’s more, when the project manager is close to or part of the design team, they will be able to answer the many questions from suppliers and installers. It’s the ideal recipe for a turnkey machine safety project.

Questions or comments?

Intervention Prévention Inc.

Intervention Prévention concentrates its operations in the field of work safety, offering specialized services following Standards CSA Z462 – Workplace Electrical Safety, CSA Z460 – Control of Hazardous Energy: Lock-out and Other Methods, and CSA Z432 – Safeguarding of Machinery.


137-2020 rue André-Labadie, Beloeil (Québec) J3G 0W6