Those in the engineering industry probably know what power take-off units are and their importance in making the transfer of power to different equipment a success. At times operations could stall on site owing to some machines running out of power. In this case, a PTO is crucial in ensuring the machines get power from the others that have plenty or as not as necessary for the task. The most common places where one could spot this unit being used are big farms and commercial industries with heavy-duty vehicles and trucks.
This system was fast invented by creative farmers seeking a way to bridge the constant power problems. With time the power take-off has undergone massive developments and advancements that have seen the manual aspects like the drive shafts and belt drivers replaced with automatic features such as geared transmission. Since PTOs are often exposed to the elements, operators need to ensure proper maintenance and handling to avoid uncertainties when they become faulty. When it comes to handling these units, one needs to follow the following safety precautions.
Ensure to Have Appropriate Master Shielding
Having a master shield would ensure that one is protected from the PTO’s hazardous aspects, such as the PTO stub. The stub is obligated to carry out power transfer from tractor, truck, or heavy commercial truck to the machine driven by the power take-off unit. Since most stubs revolve at over 600rpm, the chances of getting into an entanglement accident are if no shield is in place. Any PTO operator should always ensure that the power take-off clutch is disengaged before moving close to a stub in motion. In any case, there is a faulty master shield; it would be crucial to have it replaced since engaging with an unguarded stub is risky.
Proper PTO Driveline Shielding
Another hazardous part of a PTO is the driveline. Apart from the entanglements caused by unshielded stub, an operator could suffer injuries from shafts that might separate when the PTO is on. What happens when the shaft separates is that it will sway expansively and knock anyone in range. When a driveline shield is in place, the operator comes into contact with the rotating shaft anytime. Before engaging the PTO to ensure the shaft and the driveline shield can rotate spontaneously to give the protection, it is meant to
Disengage the Power take-off
The reason for making sure the PTO is disengaged is to ensure the operating equipment does not start the power source is engaged; ensure the power take off clutch is also disengaged. Considering the speed at which the stub and the shield revolve, one needs to pay attention before undertaking maintenance or fixing a PTO.
Additional Safety Guidelines
To add to the outlined precautionary measures, a PTO operator could consider the following precautions to ensure a high level of safety and protection from PTO related accidents;
- Put on fitting cloth that will not get entangled in case something goes wrong.
- Any operator with long hair should consider tying it well or putting on a cap that will secure it from swinging while operating a PTO.