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White Paper: Selecting Safety Standards for Machine Safeguarding Requirements

June 30, 2014
Part 1 of 5 in a series addressing the primary milestones to a safe machine based on the comprehensive guide: Six Steps to a Safe Machine.

When embarking on a path to implement machine safeguarding (protective) measures, one cannot dismiss the influence and importance of documented safety requirements – whether they are mandatory versus voluntary; normative opposed to informative; and regardless of their designation as a law, directive, regulation, harmonized standard, consensus standard, technical guideline, or merely best practice [herein referred to simply as ‘safety standards’].
“Safety standards” are requirements designed to ensure the safety of people around products, activities, or processes. They may be advisory or compulsory and are typically laid down by either a voluntary or statutory body that may be advisory or regulatory.
When it comes to safety standards, there is no shortage of documentation outlining specific requirements. Before defaulting to a laundry list of requirements that your organization has bought into for guidance, it is important to first understand why referencing specific sources is important to an organization.