SafetyCulture Summit 2020

Machine Guarding Checklists

Protect workers by reinforcing safety practices and making sure that machine guarding are in good condition

Jump to featured templates
Get everyone on the same paperless page.
Rated 4.6/5 stars on Capterra from 76 ratings
Available on iOS, Android and Web
Get started for FREE

Published September 29th, 2020

What is Machine Guarding?

Machine guarding is a safety feature or part of an equipment that functions as a barrier between the dangerous or moving parts of an equipment and the workers that operate the machines or work around them.

What is a Machine Guarding Checklist?

A machine guarding checklist is a tool used as a guide by safety officers and operations supervisors when inspecting the condition and correct use of machine guards in the workplace. A type of machine safety checklist, machine guarding checklists help ensure that machine guards are in good working condition and that workers are protected and aware of safe practices when operating equipment that requires machine guards.

In this article we will discuss the following:

Importance of Machine Guarding

Workers who operate and maintain machinery suffer approximately 18,000 amputations, lacerations, crushing injuries, abrasions, and over 800 deaths per year in the United States alone (source: OSHA). These incidents can be minimized or eliminated through machine guarding. Installation and regular maintenance of machine guards can prevent worker’s body parts from making contact with hazardous machine equipment and flying debris. Additional defenses such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and proper training are key to ensuring safety when operating machinery in your workplace.

Machine Guarding Safety Tips

Employers should strive to keep their workplace and workers safe particularly when working with machinery. Here are some safety reminders when working with machine guards:

  • Always check if guards are properly installed before commencing work.
  • Machine guards must be placed in proper position and prevent physical contact with the operator.
  • Ensure machine guards are secure and strong.
  • Ensure workers cannot bypass, remove, or tamper machine guards.
  • When installing machine guarding ensure that no objects can fall into moving parts of the machine.
  • Ensure employees are trained on a specific machine guard.
  • Machine guards should not obstruct the operator’s view.
  • If possible, the machine should be lubricated without removing machine guards.
  • A competent person must correct the machine guard immediately if defects were detected.
  • Machine operators should be trained on the hazards associated with particular machines.
  • Reinforce employee awareness of emergency protocols around machine guarding through toolbox talks.
  • Lockout the machine before removing guard when performing maintenance.
  • Conduct regular safety checks using a machine guarding checklist to reinforce safe practices around equipment.

Machine Guarding Inspection Tool

iAuditor by SafetyCulture, a powerful safety inspection tool, can help safety officers and operations supervisors conduct safety inspections before and after machine operation. Use this free collection of customizable machine guarding safety templates to capture photos of machine deficiencies, create corrective actions, and generate on the spot reports with a handheld device. Reinforce safety in your team using machine guarding checklists on iAuditor.


Erick Brent Francisco

SafetyCulture staff writer

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.