Solvay Derbyshire named winner of Risk Reduction Through Design Award 202219 August 2022

A Haviland industrial oven

Solvay Derbyshire has triumphed at this year’s Risk Reduction Through Design Awards for its innovative solution that helps protect workers from developing musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

The chemical engineering and manufacturing specialists won the prestigious award after overcoming stiff competition from innovators across a wide range of sectors.

The Risk Reduction Through Design Award 2021/22, sponsored by The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors (CIEHF), recognises design innovation to reduce the risk of MSDs. MSDs include injuries and conditions that can affect the back, joints and limbs.

Winning company, Solvay Derbyshire, worked with designer Haviland Industrial Ovens to develop an innovative design solution for loading of resin mixing bowls into a warming oven (not pictured).

Previously, two workers lifted 38kg mixing bowls containing resin up to 48 times per shift. They did this from a trolley at ground level into and out of the warming oven at the front of the resin film coating production line. This activity involved manually handling the resin mixing bowls and was identified by the company as a significant ergonomic risk.

The winning design replaced the high-level oven with a floor-level one. A bespoke trolley with a removable handle was designed, allowing the resin bowls to be wheeled directly into the new oven, eliminating the need to lift the bowls and reducing the manual handling risks. There are also fewer risks of resin spills and contact with the hot oven. The new design only requires one person to carry out the task, increasing productivity.

Operations Engineer

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