In the summer of 2015 Shawn Mantel, a Sales Engineer, and Lance LaLone, an Electrical Contractor, began conversations about each other’s respective backgrounds. They quickly realized they could join forces and offer the market something unique and they decided they could exploit a void in the market with their skills and abilities. Prior to creating PowerSafe Automation, Lance LaLone owned his own electrical & mechanical contracting business for over 15 years and was part of a family business prior to that in northeast Indiana. Shawn Mantel was part of two startup companies in the t-slotted extrusion and safety guarding market over the last 25 years being an integral part in growing them into two of the most well-known companies in their respective market.
With a gap in machine safety systems between mechanical processes and machines, and the new generation of computer controls and robots there is a need for a company to provide skilled trade services. That casual conversation quickly became reality and PowerSafe Automation was founded January 2016. They have created a niche category in the market providing safety guarding, electrical, & automation solutions focused on custom design, fabrication, and nationwide installation. This opened up opportunities to help customers reduce their pain points, lower exposure to hazards, and improve morale. Their efforts quickly paid off as they were continually adding new customers, which included a few Fortune 500 companies with multi-line/multi-plant projects.
In the fall of 2016 they needed to expand to meet current demands, and purchased a new 14,000 sq ft facility with the offices and the shop in one location. Starting out with one employee using their homes as offices and shops they now have 4 full-time employees and 3 part-time employees, and the start of a fleet of field installation vehicles and trailers. They also expanded their digital presence and became a member of ISN, a 3rd party compliance partner.
In 2017 they hired a Site Supervisor to expand installation capabilities and also renovated the offices, shop, and store front to prepare for future expansions.
In 2018 bought machines for in-house fabrication, joined 2 top safety organizations, became a US partner for a top brand of electronic safety devices, and had their first article published in the Assembly Magazine.
In 2019 money was invested to double the fleet and hire another Site Supervisor due to expanded capabilities, published 3 more articles, and won 2 awards for industrial safety solutions provider and general business.
In 2020 office have been defined for improved front-end support and a showroom for customer was created.
With no end in sight, they continue to focus on new ways to expand the business and their outreach, grow relationships with their customers, and most importantly continue to save people’s lives by improving workplace safety.
Take a journey with us through this video of our first 3 years in business with PowerSafe Automation.
PowerSafe Automation has created a niche in the market as a turnkey solutions provider focused on custom design, fabrication, and installation for machine safety and industrial automation applications. The company was founded in 2016 with consistency in brand recognition, elevating commodity products with premium value, and support to the marketplace. We are able to provide exceptional project execution and consistency to our customers due to our development and training of a complete infrastructure of policies, procedures, and reporting structure for all facets of our business. We also periodically audit our files to ensure accuracy in a dynamic business platform and to ensure any gaps are identified and remedied. We have validated our experience through memberships with ISNetworld (hiring client to contractor compliance group), NSC (National Safety Council), ASSP(American Society of Safety Professionals), and the BBB (Better Business Bureau). This allowed us to expand our outreach in networking, provide additional safety training to our employees, and create, upload, & maintain substantial safety programs along with our liability coverage to a trusted platform for clients to review.
PowerSafe Automation’s mission is to solve problems by reducing customer pain points of time constraint, lack of skilled trade, exposure to machine hazards, and liability concerns with improved workplace safety. We employ industrial engineers who meet with key personnel, such as Safety, Maintenance, and Operations to create synergy in developing the safest solution possible. This allows us to create a proper safety system while still providing the necessary access to the machine for production and maintenance, which is presented to the customer with a fully detailed CAD design. These systems can range from basic machine guarding to fully integrated machine safety systems. Turnkey designs are achieved through a combination of bolt-on physical guarding, such as T-Slotted Aluminum framing with wire mesh and/or plastic panels, machine tool safety guards, and power transmission covers. These systems are then fully integrated with electronic safety devices, such as safety light curtains, safety switches, safety mats & bumpers, and safety laser scanners along with the necessary safety control circuitry required to integrate into the customer’s machines. We also provide turnkey solutions requiring additional integration, such as sound blocking materials, automated door assists, integrated timer circuitry, production monitoring systems, and intrinsic safety systems, which are application specific.
Our experienced mechanical and controls technicians build as much of the project off-site including the safety circuits in efforts to reduce production down-time for the client. Once on-site, the proper training is executed, a jobsite analysis is reviewed, the crew gears up with the proper PPE, and the required lockout-tagout (LOTO) procedures are followed. The field technicians then install the physical safety guarding commonly consisting of drilling and tapping customer machines and/or drilling the concrete floors, as well as required custom fastening solutions that are application-specific. A “field-fit” service is provided to make sure the physical guarding provides the proper protection required. The electronic safety devices are then mounted and integrated by our controls technicians into the client’s required e-stop circuit through our own designed PowerControls machine-to-safety device integrator. This is followed by the device and circuit validation for reliability and proper functionality, which includes the proper safety relays or safety controllers and power supplies. The electronic safety devices in conjunction with our PowerControls enclosure allows the ability to achieve the highest safety category level required for each specific machine guarding application.
One success story we are proud to promote is our speed monitoring system. After attempts with other suppliers, a client contacted us with a problem looking for a unique solution. Their current situation had an old lathe with a simple barrier guard and a non-locking safety switch on the door. This machine took 15 seconds to ramp down allowing the operator to be exposed to the hazards once the non-locking door was opened. We designed a speed monitoring system using an encoder, a proximity sensor, and a locking solenoid switch controlled by our PowerControls. This kept the door locked until the speed monitoring system sensed the lathe was at zero rotation eliminating the hazard presence to the operator. We were just published as an authority for this application in the June 2018 issue of Assembly Magazine.
PowerSafe Automation helps improve workplace safety attitudes, which allows us to have a high customer retention rate by providing the client with an exceptional value for their money focusing on quality, reliability, and service. We provide consistency throughout the entire custom design thru installation process ranging from a single facility to Fortune 500 companies with multiple locations nationwide. We believe communication is a key factor in building long term customer relations. We hold internal pre-jobsite meetings to properly prepare for the project, as well as hold post jobsite meetings to discuss the successes and challenges of each project. This allows us to build a safer work environment for our clients by providing continual improvement to the marketplace while lowering the statistic of OSHA machine guarding methods standard 1910.212 being the 9th most-cited OSHA violation.
PowerSafe Automation works to improve the quality of life for others by building relationships between the community and our company through charitable donations of both time and money.
Helping to keep workers safe at American industrial companies nationwide through innovative machine safety solutions!