In advance of the Next-Generation Collabrative Robots & Automation Technologies 2016 conference (August 17-18, Detroit MI), we spoke to Matt Epperson, compliance safety and health officer, Department of Labour, Occupational Safety and Health Administration
With the industry now witnessing an influx of next-generation collaborative robotics and automation technologies, how important is it for the automotive industry and technology providers to come together and share best practices for driving safer, faster and more profitable manufacturing and maintaining a solid life-cycle?
It is more important now since there are many unknown variables related to this new technology. It is very important for industry to share ideas and best practices when it comes to protecting their workforce from workplace injuries.
What safety measures should really be in place to ensure humans interact safely with automation technologies?
There are many new devices/safety controls on the market today that employers can use to protect employees from machines. The employers needs to perform some form of risk assessment and find the right device for the task.
What will be the highlights of your talk?
My talk will touch on our Agencies mission, the OSHA regulations related to robotics and I will also be talking about what employers should expect if OSHA inspects their facility.
Who are you most looking forward to hearing from?
I am most looking forward to hearing how employers in the private industry are implementing the new robotic technology while still keeping employee safety in the forefront.