Thomas J. Cocchiola, PE, CSP ::::
Case Synopsis: A worker at a drycleaning facility sustained severe burns when a garment press malfunctioned and unexpectedly closed on his hands. An operator would typically place a pair of pants onto a stationary lower buck and activate a pushbutton to close the press. The operator must continuously activate a pushbutton as the press closes; the press immediately opens if the operator releases the pushbutton. After the press closes, the operator is able to activate a second pushbutton to lock it in position until a timer releases it. The accident occurred when the press closed unexpectedly and trapped the operator’s hands while he was smoothing wrinkles in a pair of pants.