Nail Gun Injuries are not a Laughing Matter:
Use these Safety Tips!
By: The Working Man
Nail guns have made hand nailing almost a thing of the past
for professional builders and even for many do-it-
yourselfers, but their great advantage is also a great
safety risk if the user is not educated in safe usage and
careful to follow recommended safety steps.
Between 2001 and 2005, hospital emergency rooms in the
United States treated around thirty-seven thousand people
annually for injuries by pneumatic Nail Guns. Most of those
injured workers were "week-end" carpenters, but a
substantial number of such injuries happen to professionals.
A Nail Gun rapidly and repeatedly fires nails with enough
power to drive them instantly through several inches of a
board. For high speed uses such as roofing or framing the
nail guns are usually set to fire a nail whenever the
trigger is pulled and the gun muzzles contacts a surface.
Improper use or a slip on bad footing can cause the gun to
throw nails places where they were not intended, such as
into your body or that of a coworker! Nails can ricochet off
of nails that have already been set or run through a piece
of wood into your hand or leg.
Below are some tips for Nail Gun Safety that may help to
prevent such accidents.
* Know how to properly use your particular Nail Gun. Read
the manufacturer's instructions and follow their recommended
* Make sure that you are using the right tip for the job at
hand, sequential trip triggers and contact trip triggers are
very different and suited for different uses.
* Wear your face shield. A nail shooting into wood can send
a splinter flying your way, or even the nail itself.
* Be as careful of where you point the Nail Gun, and the
target and whatever is behind it, as you would be if the gun
fired bullets. Keep your own body parts and those of others
out of the line of fire in case there is a problem.
* Remember that the density of wood is neither a constant
nor always apparent. Nails have been known to hit a knot and
come out the side of the board or even back toward the Nail
Gun. When you shoot a nail be sure that no body part is
closer to the wood than the length of the nail you are
shooting, just in case.
* If you are using a corded or pneumatic Nail Gun then watch
out for the cord or air hose, it is a tripping hazard to
yourself and coworkers.
* Maintain your Nail Gun properly and use only new, clean
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