Standard and Customised Guards for Bowling Centre Pinspotter / Pinsetter Machines


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Procter Machine Safety,  in partnership with ISS Safety Ltd, is offering a comprehensive service to manufacture and install guarding on pin spotting / pinsetter machines so bowling centre operators can meet their legal obligations to protect workers and members of the public.

Working with co-operation from the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) and TBPA (Tenpin Bowling Proprietors Association), Procter Machine Guarding and ISS Safety have developed standardised designs for guards and safety-related control systems to protect operatives who need to access pinspotter / pinsetter machinery for cleaning, maintenance or to clear jams.  Further protective measures prevent staff and members of the public from coming into contact with moving machinery by reaching under or by opening the mask boards from the bowling lane.  These guarding packages are equally suitable for installing on new machines or retrofitting to existing machines and are cost-effective, workable, and fully compliant with relevant machinery safety standards and the latest guidelines from the HSE.

Bowling pinsetter pinspotter machine guards

Procter Machine Safety, in partnership with ISS Safety, is offering a comprehensive service to manufacture and install guarding on pinsetter / pinsetter machines

Standardised designs are available for Brunswick and QubicaAME machines, though these designs can easily be modified for non-standard installation.  Procter Machine Guarding and ISS Safety have also retrofitted guarding to pinspotters / pinsetters manufactured by other companies, and can readily modify their existing designs or create fully bespoke guards to suit any pinspotters / pinsetters.  So far the companies have installed guarding at over 40 bowling centres, representing approximately 1000 machines (500 pairs), which is more than any other suppliers of retrofit pinspotter / pinsetter guarding.  Procter and ISS will quote for retrofitting guarding to any pinspotter / pinsetter machinery anywhere in the UK.  Compared with guarding from other suppliers.  Procter Machine Guarding and ISS Safety believe theirs is more robust and user-friendly, as well as being fully compliant with health and safety requirements.  The guarding is typically installed outside the bowling centre’s normal opening hours, so there is no loss of revenue during the upgrade project.

If a bowling centre operator requires just a risk assessment in order to establish the current level of safety, ISS Safety can undertake this and provide an illustrated written report.  Nevertheless, all guarding projects include a risk assessment in order to establish the efficacy of any existing safeguards and to identify any factors that might require measures beyond those included in the standard guarding designs. A full survey is also carried out to ensure that the guards will be ‘right first time’ and not have to be modified on site to fit around the building structure or other obstructions.

Following a fatal accident in a London bowling centre in 2006 (there has also been on fatality in the USA in 2001 and another in Denmark in 2008), the HSE investigated and found that pinspotters / pinsetters installed in the UK are generally inadequately guarded to prevent to access to dangerous moving parts; this included most of the newer CE marked machines as well.  In addition, the HSE was concerned about the risks associated with falls from height while technicians are accessing parts of the machinery.  The guarding design developed by Procter Machine Guarding addresses both of these issues, providing a combination of fixed guards, opening guards, and steps, walkways and guard rails to address and risks associated with falls from height.  Guards are installed on natural pairs of machines so that accessing a machine only causes that machine and its natural pair to be stopped.

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