“You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first.” –Unknown
One of the challenges we are all dealing with these days is how to keep our families safe and healthy while performing our essential duties. For those who aren’t able to work from home and must be on-site to keep essential industries running, passing along a possible virus to a loved one can be a real concern.
Hansen Plastics Corporation (HPC) supplies parts to several essential industries including transportation, agriculture, and life safety so it is important that the employee-owners all work together to stay healthy and keep HPC running and these essential industries functioning. It is also important that there be as little risk to all employee-owners and their families of catching this virus as possible and as employee-owners, they know that working together, sharing our knowledge and helping out where can is the best way to accomplish this.
In addition to being an injection molder, HPC does have 3D printing capabilities, and Mark Hill, Tooling Engineer, and HPC’s resident 3D printing expert has used his knowledge to create re-usable face masks, made to be used along with disposable or washable inserts. HPC employee-owners who are still working at the plant and are in close contact with those in high-risk categories or even family members of HPC employee-owners who may need a mask can request one.
While the masks are not N95 certified, they are a decent last resort option with N95 face masks being in dangerously short supply. The material used in the HPC masks is FDA approved as food contact safe so it is safe to wear and to be in contact with skin. It is also chemical resistant so it can easily be washed for reuse.
In addition to the masks, “we are looking into other things we can produce to help during this time, including a face shield developed by Prusa Research, which further helps protect the nose and mouth from particulates,” says Mark, “but for now this is a quick stop-gap solution that could only be provided by 3D printing technology.”
“This really was a grassroots effort with many employee-owners pitching in,” says Tim Bayer, President/CEO of HPC. “Mark got it started and once word got out, other employee-owners brought in their printers and started printing the masks too. We want anyone in our HPC family who wants a mask to have one and we’re going to do what we can to make sure that happens.”
For more information on homemade facemasks, please visit, https://www.cnet.com/how-to/homemade-face-masks-in-public-what-the-cdc-means-about-face-coverings-and-n95/
For more information on HPC please visit, www.hansenplastics.com