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I Work at a mid quality cabinet shop that employs 250. Employees come and go. New hires really have little or no experience, ESPECIALLY with shop tools.

Just today I watched one of these uneducated people cutting a piece set at 3/4" on the tablesaw. I watched him grab the miter gauge and use it as a push stick, on a SawStop no less! I started to stop him but he already finished.

I lost count of how many times they had to replace the safety brake and blade on those saws.

It's amazing that in a professional shop that there isn't a big focus on safety or tool ettiquite, especialy with new or the inexperienced. Seems like they're more concerned with $$$$.
 

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where's my table saw?
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If you are concerned enough?

You could always suggest they appoint a "machine safety instructor" to help prevent accidents and avoid possible lawsuits. They may offer you the position.... :blink: It will show a good company spirit. Union shop? Probably not.
 
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Could be a union shop...what does that matter? Union shops are as disorganized and under supervised as non union in this area. I'm thinking that with that many employees, it's likely a union shop.

Shops of that size usually have dedicated table saw personnel. Whether the operators use due care or follow good operating procedures can be a huge problem for the shop owner(s).






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Discussion Starter #4
Not a union, just an employee owned small business. We sell to dealers across the country for resale, or individual sales. As far as my position, I'm just another spoke in the wheel.

I brought up to one of the leads about having some sort of certification classes for everyone hired. Can't pass, can't run equipment. He said he would bring it up at their next meeting. I wouldn't mind being a safety instructor, since in my home shop I follow so many safety standards and then some. I would make their heads explode
 

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My brother-in-law worked for a shop like that. He went to work for a company that made louver shutters. He had never done any kind of woodworking at all and they put him on a table saw from day one. This was in the 1970's when no shop used guards on the saws. Withing two weeks he cut his right hand down the middle up to his wrist.
 

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Your post is disturbing but not surprising. I worked for my states department of labor and as a consultant to OSHA, particularly in outreach training programs. With few exceptions, any employer with one or more full time employees is required to follow OSHA standards. This is not optional. OSHA isn't about busting businesses for non compliance, although they will do that, the goal is to reduce workplace injuries and deaths. There are numerous publications and web pages to help businesses understand their responsibilities and help with compliance.

You are in a difficult situation as an employee. It's important that you understand your rights. The company should have an ongoing safety training program. It's far more complex than demonstrating proper tool safety. A good place to start is with either OSHA or your states department of labor. https://www.osha.gov/dcsp/compliance_assistance/index.html
 
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