Textile mill safety notice
Textile mill safety notice forbidding workers to climb over the mule headstock, around 1900-1940.
Working close to moving, often unguarded machinery, accidents were common amongst textile mill workers. The government eventually brought in laws and a factory inspectorate in order to regulate mill safety. However, many mill owners dodged regulations. They argued that it cost them money to build guards on machines and affected productivity to stop them for cleaning. Mill workers sometimes broke the rules too, often to save themselves time. This notice warns workers not to climb over the headstock, the metal framework of a spinning mule that contained the gearing that drove its moving carriage.
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