General safety rules for CNC machines

CNC machines

By law, you are required to follow the safety rules that apply to the CNC machine you are using. If you or other workers are injured while not following the safety rules required for the machine you are using, you may not be entitled to any compensation or even be liable for the injury to others.

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It's a good idea to become familiar with the machine safety requirements of your job. Be aware that there may be some different requirements in each state/territory. If you are not sure about anything always ask your Occupational Health and Safety representative for advice beforehand.

Below are some general machine safety rules that you can use as a guide only. You might like to add any other rules that apply to you.


  • Always keep the area around the machine clear of obstacles.
  • Always stack material where you can reach it but where it is clear of the moving parts of the machine.
  • Always check that tools are sharp and set correctly.
  • Always check that the correct tool data is entered into the CNC program.
  • Always make sure that all guards are in position while the machine is in operation.
  • Always make sure that all work and fixtures are clamped securely before starting machine.
  • Always make sure spindle direction is correct for right-hand or left-hand operation.
  • Always conduct a dry run to ensure the program is correct.
  • Always follow company policy on correct procedures when handling or lifting parts or tooling.


  • Do not use the machine table as a workbench.
  • Do not use compressed air to blow chips from the parts of the machine, machine surfaces, cabinets, controls or floor around the machine.