From working in a warehouse to operating in a processing facility, there can be many hazards involved in the manufacturing industry. Falling, tripping, and slipping on loose materials are some of the main causes of injuries in the workplace. All these can lead to an increase in injury costs, a decline in employees’ morale, higher turnover, and decreased productivity. Needless to say, safety matters more than ever.
Besides these main (and perhaps more obvious) hazards, there is one that is just as important: using the right cutting tools. In this article, we are going to take a closer look at why using the proper knife is crucial, and how OLFA safety tools can help.
Why Does It Matter?
Did you know that in 2022 hand cuts and lacerations accounted for nearly 1/3 of all workplace injuries? Wounds on employees’ hands are often caused by using cutting tools that don’t have any safety mechanisms (e.g. self-retracting blades). Having safety features adds an extra layer of protection and lowers the risk of workers cutting themselves, whether a small or a deeper cut.
But hand injuries aren’t only lacerations caused by a blade. They can also be the result of ergonomic injuries to the muscles, which may happen over long-term use of a tool that isn’t properly designed. Both types of injuries may result in days away from work, which affects productivity and may disrupt workplace operations.
How to Prevent Injuries
Choosing safety knives as part of your daily work is the answer. Why? Because safety knives provide many benefits that other cutting tools may not have. First of all, they’re designed with safety in mind. Everything from the retracting mechanisms to the handles, to the function itself, has an emphasis on reducing injuries. These knives want to be as safe as possible while being sturdy and comfortable for prolonged use.
That’s exactly what goes into OLFA’s family of safety knives. Based on the materials you need to cut, your personal preferences, and the fit of the knife in your hand, there are many options you can choose from.
Semi-Automatic Safety Knives
OLFA’s semi-automatic safety knives feature a retractable blade that withdraws when lifted from the cutting surface. A stainless-steel channel keeps the blade secure during use, so you never have to worry about accidentally cutting yourself. These knives can be used for both right or left-handed users with just a simple flip of the blade. The semi-automatic safety knives are ideal for cutting bagged goods, heavy-corrugate (3-ply), foam, layers of paper and foil, plastic strapping, pallet/shrink wrap, tape, and even construction materials (*SK-4 and SK-9 only).
This category has the largest selection of safety knives, allowing users to choose from:
Fully-Automatic Safety Knives
OLFA’s fully automatic safety knives bring safety a step further, with enhanced safety features. In addition to having a blade that automatically retracts as soon as cutting is paused or stopped, the blade retraction mechanism cannot be overridden by the user, even when the blade slider is engaged. Just like the semi-automatic ones, these safety knives can be used by both right and left-handed users, making them any option for anyone.
They are ideal for cutting corrugate, film, layers of paper/foil and tape. You can choose between:
Concealed Blade Safety Knives
Concealed blade safety knives are the final category of OLFA’s safety knives. These tools have limited blade exposure, where the blade is protected in a shielded channel to ensure it only meets the materials intended to be cut. Their design is also very easy and intuitive, with users only having to pull through materials to start cutting. These safety knives feature replaceable blades and allow for either right-or left-handed use.
They are perfect for cutting many materials, including corrugate (SK-15 and SK-16), bagged goods, cable ties, films, fiberboard/flooring protection, plastic strapping bands, pallet/shrink wrap, carpet, rubber sheeting, Tyvek/fiber paper, and landscaping fabric.
Now that you know about why using safety knives can be a game changer, it’s time to choose the right one for your job and facility. If you’re unsure which one to go with, don’t hesitate to ask for help: register for a FREE Safety Evaluation by our trained specialists and learn the best safety knife for your application!