HSENI announces ‘Machinery guarding, safe isolation and maintenance’ inspection initiative across Northern Ireland Quarries

Date published: 13 November 2023

The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) will be carrying out an inspection initiative focusing on machinery guarding, safe isolation and maintenance procedures across Northern Ireland Quarries from 11 December through January 2024.

Machinery Guarding - Quarries

HSENI inspectors will be visiting quarries to ensure that machinery is adequately guarded to prevent access to dangerous parts.

Inspectors will be checking that operators have adequate procedures in place for safe isolation and lock-out of equipment, and reviewing the measures in place to ensure both routine and non-routine maintenance can be carried out safely.

Speaking on the upcoming campaign, HSENI Principal Inspector Brian Pryce said: “Machinery guarding, isolation and maintenance activities remain a major risk for the sector. Our key message is to prevent access to dangerous parts of machinery, and to develop, implement and supervise appropriate procedures for carrying out maintenance (i.e. isolation and lock-out).

“Our Inspectors will be checking that adequate arrangements are in place to guard dangerous moving parts of work equipment, and that suitable procedures are in place to safely complete both routine and non-routine maintenance.”

HSENI Inspectors will be providing information and advice during the inspection initiative. Where significant risks are found, Inspectors may take enforcement action in order to achieve compliance with health and safety legislation and to ensure that the risks are properly managed.

The inspection pro-forma which will be used by Inspectors during these inspections can be found at the following link:

Practical guidance on how you may ensure the safe use of work equipment on your site can be found in L22- ‘Safe use of work equipment’ This is available at:

Operators are further directed to the following link on our website:

Notes to editors: 

  1. The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI), is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body, sponsored by the Department for the Economy (DfE), and is the lead body responsible for the promotion and enforcement of health and safety work standards in Northern Ireland: www.hseni.gov.uk
  2. For media enquiries please contact: HSENI Press Office on 028 9024 3249 or by email at media@hseni.gov.uk. For out of hours please contact Duty Press Officer on 028 9037 8110

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