Once again, during the month of October, oSa® (Organisation for the Safety of Abrasives) is launching the #oSaSAFTEYDAYS campaign designed to highlight abrasive tool safety and accident prevention in the workplace.
In accordance with the ‘European Week for Safety and Health at Work’, oSa is supporting its abrasive members in their promotion of safe products and practices. The campaign is designed to reach workers and decision makers purchasing abrasives, to make the safe choice. By increasing recognition and understanding of the oSa symbol, it’s hoped users will choose certified brands whose products have undergone rigorous performance and quality testing.
Proud to be a founding member of oSa
Safety requirements for abrasives are not yet globally binding and unsafe abrasive products do exist, presenting a serious danger to life and limb. That's why, at Saint-Gobain Abrasives, we're proud to be a founding member of oSa, manufacturing abrasives to the highest level of safety.
Accident prevention and productivity are key drivers in our quest for continuous improvement. Whether it’s cutting discs or grinding wheels, flap or fibre discs, diamond blades or bonded wheels, we pay the utmost care and attention to safety and quality testing. This ensures every product shipped from our manufacturing sites reaches our end users in the best condition, giving peace of mind when using a Saint-Gobain product.
Rigorous product testing and monitoring
Using the oSa symbol on products and often their packaging identifies they have been through thorough testing procedures.
The requirements differ by product family, for bonded abrasives, products undergo burst speed testing, side load impact testing, balance testing and dimensional measuring and weighing (according to EN 12413 regulations).
Superabrasive/diamond products are speed tested, bend tested (diamond cutting blades), shear tested (portable dish/cup wheels), tensile tested (diamond wires) and blades also undergo tension testing (according to EN 13236 regulations).
Coated abrasive products also undergo speed testing and dimensional weight and measuring but also humidity testing (in accordance with EN 13743).
Ensuring quality and safety
In addition to product testing, manufacturing monitoring and controls are also vital to ensure standards are maintained and developed in accordance with technological and methodological advances. All oSa member companies must pass strict auditing procedures to certify quality management and documentation of processes. This documentation enables traceability to the manufacturer, meaning any bonded, diamond or coated abrasive featuring with the oSa trademark can be traced back to the exact plant and batch at any time.
Not only does being a member of oSa mean our products are tested to ensure they’re safe, it also means we abide by ethical standards within our business and manufacturing processes. As such, we comply with all local and national Environmental Health, Welfare & Safety legislation.
More information about EHS and quality conformity can be found on the oSa website: www.osa-abrasives.org
The importance of abrasive safety cannot be underestimated, as Christian Bako, General Manager, Central Europe at Saint-Gobain Abrasives and member of the oSa board of trustees explains. "Given the high speed of rotation, equaling the speed of Formula 1 cars in some cases, accidents with abrasive tools can have serious, sometimes fatal consequences. Unfortunately, on a worldwide level there are still too many of those accidents caused by abrasive tools. That’s why we are heavily involved, together with oSa, to provide safe abrasive tools to all users of our products. This is also perfectly embedded in our vision to “Engineer a safer, better and greener world”.