While it may be an impossibility to wholly prevent accidents in and about the foundry, much has been accomplished in that line. Mechanical safeguards are now in pretty general use in modern foundries. It is only the out-of-date shop which is conspicuous for neglect in providing them.
Only some of the more important items regarding safety are called to the reader's attention, and perhaps the most important one of all is to teach the workman to think safety first. As an example, in a foundry employing 850 men there were, during a period of 6 months, 57 accidents involving loss of time. Not one of these was due to the lack of mechanical safeguards; all were results of carelessness on the part of the injured, or of negligence by their fellow workmen.
A large percentage of accidents in the foundry are in the nature of burns from hot metal, and again by far the greater part of these are below the knee. This shows the practical necessity for a legging of some material which would resist the hot metal. All employes in the foundry who come in contact in any manner with the work of pouring, or of shaking out flasks after pouring, when the hot sand may be just as dangerous as the molten metal, should be compelled to wear the foundry or congress shoe.
There should be frequent inspection of all foundry rigging, such as crane hooks, chains, and ladle shanks, also great care should be used under the cupola and tapping spout, as any excess of moisture, were molten metal to be spilled upon it, would cause explosions and probably seriously injure someone.
In the cleaning room, protection for the eyes from flying chips of metal is important; so, also, are guards over grinding wheels which should be equipped with an efficient exhaust to care for dust.
While there are many more things which might be mentioned regarding safety, as applied to foundry practice, those already mentioned should be sufficient to cause the student to think safety, to put his thoughts in practice and to teach others to do likewise.