Assessment of safety in some wood processing mills in Kumasi

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A number of factors like high cost of putting in place safety measures, fear on the part of workers to push forward their demand for safety, use of obsolete machines, lack of record keeping, insufficient space, lack of proper training for workers and govemments inability to mandate safety inspectors to prosecute employers who violate safety precautions have affected safety in some of the wood processing mills in Kumasi. The others included absence of safety committees, lack of original spare parts from manufacturers, lack of maintenance for the few safety apparatus that have been provided, some workers considering the wearing of some of safety devices a bother and uncomfortable and some managements were more concerned profit than paying attention to safety and health matters of their employees. The criteria for the assessment of safety in some wood processing mills in Kumasi were based on that proposed by factory inspectorate division in factories, offices and shops Acts of 1970 and the factories (woodworking) regulations of 1959. In the analysis, order of decreasing adherence to safety measures by the plant staff included safety workers, management, operators and maintenance staff. It was observed in the field work that, wood processing machines were not safe due to incessant breakdown and reportable accident cases.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Wood Technology and Management, 1998