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Safe training sees shopfitters educated on industry expectations

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The increasingly forged links in occupational health and safety between manufacturing training and the education sector are clearly demonstrated at North Sydney TAFE College.

Responsible for formulating and conducting apprentice training courses in shop fitting and general carpentry for first, second and final year students in a three year course, the NSW college established a comprehensive dust extraction system from the outset to ensure students work in the utmost of safety.

In addition, head teacher of the shop-fitting department, Ezio Favretti, says that by implementing the system supplied by Donaldson Torit-DCE , the school exemplifies to students and their employers exactly what level of OH&S is required to meet modern WorkCover Authority standards.

"We have to consider that each student we train enters the workforce and should therefore be acquainted with the duty of care necessary to maintain their health on the job," said Mr Favretti.

"As we are constantly putting timber through processes that cause large amounts of woodchips and fine dusts, the system installed by Donaldson Torit-DCE captures and removes any potentially harmful product, especially the respirable dusts, while the system itself is designed to expand and allow new machines to be added to it without hindrance.

"Considering the woodworking machines we utilise, the output of chips and dust can be in high quantities. Without any effective form of dust capture and disposal this would be very dangerous."

"A large assembly of machines is linked by a common high-volume ducting system which extracts the waste product as it leaves the machines, effectively directing it to a dual system of hoppers situated outside the building.

"Regardless if it is one, some or all of the machines in use simultaneously, the Torit-DCE ducting system reaches vital output points of each machine."

North Sydney TAFE has the following machines in its classrooms: one electronically-controlled panel saw, one combination machine thicknesser and joiner, a standard joiner, band saw, router, multi boring machine, a radial arm saw and a manual saw.

To prevent any potential for dust pollution, Donaldson fitted a Torit DCE Model C48H/K15 dust collector powered by an 11Kw fan to cover a total filter area of 48m2.

This unit has been fitted with pneumatic arms and 2m3 skips for environmentally-responsible handling of final disposal. Overall, the entire extraction system is suitable for 6,500 m3/min.

In an adjacent workshop there are two sanders that also run on the main extraction unit. Including the main feeder line, ducting length exceed 50 metres.

"Just as any shop fitting business would do, we are likely to adopt new machines as they are deemed necessary," said Mr Favretti.

"This is where the Donaldson Torit-DCE system - with its ability to allow new additions to integrate easily into the entire dust extraction system saves us time and money as it merely takes placing the machine, adding the ducting, then configuring it to the control system.

"With our investment in dust extraction, from the outset we have been able to provide a safe environment for our students while showing them the standards that are expected in the workforce."

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