The last area to explore in this three-part series on print shop health and safety is post-press (binding and finishing), which includes all process after the press room to make the printed material into a consumer-ready product. This can include (but is not limited to) trimming, assembling, gluing, drilling and wrapping. Here are 5 tips for a maintaining a healthy and safe post-press environment.
1. Don’t get burned – Be careful of hot glue pots in perfect binders. Ensure that you are on a steady platform when refilling the glue pots and don’t touch the sides!
2. Use the proper tools – Have the correct tools on-hand for the job. If replacing a worn out blade, for example, use gloves and handle with care. Take the time to do it right the first time.
3. Take a seat – If your job requires a lot of standing, ask your employer to provide mats or insoles to cushion your feet and protect your back from long-term strain. Take a break and sit down if you feel overexerted. It will make you feel better, increase your energy and allow you to be more productive when you stand back up.
4. Rotate often (if possible) – If you’re trained to operate different parts of the same piece of equipment or if you’re trained to use several different pieces of equipment, rotate often to avoid strain from repetitive tasks. If this is not part of the current set of operations, ask if you can be cross-trained on different equipment.
5. Invest in automation – If your print shop is in the market to make smart investments, suggest investing in technology to automatically lift, lower and load heavy materials. This will increase efficiency and free up workers to complete more skilled tasks.
Above all else, follow your instincts and know that you have the right to refuse unsafe work.
Be calm, be confident and think common sense!
There’s no better time to refresh your lifesaving skills. If you are in the Toronto area, contact us directly to set up an in-home, in-studio or in-office session today!