A Personal Story From NMC’s General Manager, Patrick Madigan


Years ago, I had a regrettable accident that could have easily been avoided by a simple sign. I was working on a large machine equipped with a fifty ton die-cutting press. The top platen of the press was a piece of steel that was thirty inches square and three inches thick. The press was driven by a large, eight inch air cylinder. As we were preparing for a large customer visit, I was doing some last minute adjustments to the machine so it was partially dismantled. The air compressors in the factory typically ran from 6:30 AM until midnight each day, holding the die-press open. The press was held open by the stiction of the air cylinder, but as I assembled the machine the press was jarred loose and fell on my arm – completely pinning my arm to the machine. My fellow workers immediately started up the air compressors again, which then set me free. When I pulled out my arm, I saw a bloody, gaping hole in my right wrist caused by the die. I assume that since we were cleaning up for the customer visit, someone unknowingly turned off the air compressors at lunchtime.

This accident could not have happened at a worse time. Three weeks before my wedding day, I was off to the hospital to get fixed up…and my then fiancé was not too happy. I could have avoided saying “I do” while recovering from this injury by the implantation of a safety sign stating “Air Compressors Must Stay On During Work Hours”. Fortunately, the injury was minor and I could return to work… but not everyone is this lucky. The importance of workplace safety is sometimes swept under the carpet, but I have now made it my mission to bring awareness to all labor sites and facilities!

Accidents happen. Workplace injuries are not uncommon, but National Marker wants to change that. Patrick’s story is an example of how something so simple could have changed the workplace from fatal, to safe.

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