4097978010 - Product Safety Programs ME4214 Design for...

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1 ME4214 Design for Product Safety Management and Organization for Product Safety Dr. David Yuen Department of Mechanical Engineering The Hong Kong Polytechnic University 2 Product Safety Programs • The courts and safety agencies expect manufacturers to take reasonable care in the design and manufacture of their products. • Most regulatory agencies are following policies of deterring accidents by having manufacturers anticipate and resolve safety problems before products are released to the market. • To satisfy the safety agencies and to lessen their legal problems, manufacturers must produce "reasonably" safe products. 3 Product Safety Programs (cont’d) • Since the term "reasonable" is open to interpretation by others, manufacturers should exceed what they consider "reasonable“ and produce the safest product possible within cost limitations. • To do this requires sustained, systematic, and coordinated programs involving management and technical expertise in all aspects of the development, production, distribution, and operational support of their products. • For the safety program to be effective at minimal cost, it must begin as soon as possible after the idea for a new product or a modification is generated. 4 Management Responsibilities • All tasks in an effective safety program can be separated into the life-cycle phases through which any product must pass. • Two factors that must be emphasized: management responsibility and management control. • The top manager in any managerial hierarchy involved with a product is responsible for ensuring that the product is reasonably safe. • The manager can delegate tasks to be accomplished but cannot delegate the responsibility for ensuring that those tasks have been done.
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5 Management Responsibilities (cont’d) - A Court Case The FDA charged Acme Markets and its president, Park, with violating the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by permitting food held in a warehouse to be contaminated – Acme pleaded guilty but Park did not. – Park admitted that he was responsible for seeing that sanitary conditions were maintained, but he argued that the responsibility was one he had assigned to "dependable subordinates." The case was tried in a federal court where Park was found guilty. The decision was reversed in a court of appeals and then it was reversed again in the Supreme Court. In 1975 the Court ruled that although company officials may delegate responsibilities, they continue to have the responsibility to follow up such assignments. Although this precedence case was about food products, it would probably result in similar decisions by other courts in similar situations relating to mechanical or electrical products. 6
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4097978010 - Product Safety Programs ME4214 Design for...

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