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With this website we intend to reduce the number of accidents caused by defeating of safeguards. Against the background of global markets, the problem of defeated safeguards is not limited to individual countries. An international exchange of information, measures and solutions relating to this issue is our target.

Relaunch of the website https://stop-defeating.org/

The website stop-defeating.org offers cross sector information and tools both for manufacturers and users of machinery to prevent the defeating of safeguards. The content of the webpage is developed by the working group “defeating of safeguards” which consists of representatives of German social accident insurance institutions and is chaired by the institute for occupational safety and health. The content is made available in German and English alike.

The website, that has first been published in 2010, has recently been completely revised, and further material has been added. The presentation of information is now aligned with the life cycle of machinery, clarifying which measures to prevent defeating need to be applied by manufacturers or users at which step of the machine’s life.

Further practical help both for manufacturers and users is available in form of downloadable informational sheets and presentations:

  • Cross sector best practice design examples
  • Cross sector examples of accidents caused by defeated safeguards
  • Tuition modules
  • Educational films


  • Specific information directly accessible to the parties involved in this topic: manufacturers, suppliers and users of machinery
  • Best practice examples
  • Useful tools like checklists for the purchase of new machinery or apps to determine the incentive for defeating protective devices

Activities Stop defeating of safeguards on machinery

  • Contribute to an open discussion within companies about the issue of defeating safeguards by using the information provided on the website. These discussions are to be the basis for new solutions to avoid incentives for defeating, and thus to render acts of defeating safeguards unnecessary.
  • Elaborate a paper on interlocking devices with low coding.

Stop defeating - New explanatory film for machine manufacturers by DGUV

In the world of machines, safeguards are of crucial importance. But what happens when these safety devices themselves become a problem? The new explanatory film is aimed at manufacturers of machines and systems and highlights the challenges associated with defeated safeguards.

Background: People working on machines are exposed to hazards posed by the machines themselves. Safeguards are used to minimize these risks. These are intended to protect employees from the remaining hazards of the machine. Unfortunately, despite the associated risk, these devices are repeatedly dismantled, bypassed or otherwise rendered ineffective. Health and safety experts assume that safeguards are temporarily or permanently manipulated on one in four machines. This results in thousands of accidents at work that can be traced back to defeating.

Challenges: The defeating of protective devices is often related to deficiencies in the machine's safety concept. If the concept is not tailored to the operability of the machine, safeguards are perceived as a nuisance. As a result, important activities such as maintenance, setup, troubleshooting or cleaning of the machine are made more difficult or even impossible by the protective device. This creates a strong incentive for people working with such machines to tamper with them.

Company responsibility: Companies that manufacture are legally obliged to only place and provide safe machines on the market. Machines with a high incentive to tamper are not to be considered safe and must not be operated due to the increased risk. The question of whether or not a machine's safeguards offer an incentive to tamper is therefore highly relevant for both machine manufacturers and operating companies.

The new explanatory film sheds light on these topics and provides suggestions on how manufacturers can ensure that their machines do not provide an additional incentive to tamper with them. This is the only way to effectively prevent accidents at work and ensure the safety of the people who work with these machines on a daily basis.


Stefan Bommer
German Social Accident Insurance Institution for the foodstuffs and catering industry (BGN), Mannheim, Germany


Members of the Project Group
July 2024

Relaunch of the webseite https://stop-defeating.org: completely revised, further material added

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