Common Power Tool Accidents Part 1
By: The Working Man
Power tools are not tools to be used lightly or without
forethought. You need to pay attention to yourself and
others the entire time you are using a power tool and make
sure that you are wearing the
equipment and that the area in which you will be working is
safe for power tool use.
Many people have been seriously hurt from not taking the
proper precautions while operating power tools. Accidents
are even more probable and the injuries more serious when
using power tools than your average hand tool. Even deaths
have sometimes occurred from improper use or simple
accidents while operating a power tool.
Power Tool Safety:
Before you turn on or operate a power tool you should read
the directions that come with it and use all recommended
safety precautions and heed all warnings within the
directions. Power tools are wonderfully useful, but they are
also dangerous. Never use a power tool for anything other
than its intended use.
The most common injuries that occur while operating power
tools are to the hands, particularly the fingers. The injury
can be from a minor nick to the loss of several fingers. In
the United States power tools cause almost half the injuries
that involve a partially severed finger. And of those
fingers, it is the index and middle finger that are the most
susceptible. The culprit power tool is usually some kind of
power saw. As an added note, about fifty-five percent of the
injuries reported in the United States that involve a power
saw occur in a home, not on a job site.
One of the most common ways that you can be injured during
power tool use is by not unplugging the power tool before
changing out the blade or other parts. It only takes a few
seconds to unplug a power tool and there is really no excuse
for not doing so. If you are using a battery powered power
tool you should remove the battery before changing parts.
The slight inconvenience of taking the time to do this is
nothing compared to the loss of your finger.
Another concern is the cords that are attached to power
tools. The power tool accident rate has gone down since
battery powered power tools were invented. If you do have a
power tool that uses a cord you should make sure that it is
properly secured and that the cord stays well away from the
area in which you are cutting.
Don't leave the cord where someone may trip over it. To
avoid the possibility of electric shock or even
electrocution, make sure that the cord is not frayed or
damaged. Make sure that the cord is kept out of damp or wet
places as you work, and that no liquid can be spilled on it.
These precautions include any extension cords that you may
also be using.
Use your safety sense and enjoy the time and effort you save
with power tools.
When working with power tools, make sure that you are using
the right PPE or personal protection equipment. Accidents
can happen no matter how safe you are trying to be. You can
trip, fall, or slip and if you have a power tool in your
hand it can result in injury.
Don't think that just because you are at your home or in
your familiar workshop an accident can't occur. This is
especially true on ladders. People have died
slipped on a ladder with a power tool in their hands.
Before using power tools be sure that the area you are
working in is secure. Ladders should be secured and in place
without any rocking. If a surface is wet or slippery do not
work on it. The same goes for an unstable surface.
Of course you cannot always make a job site totally secure,
which is understood. But be sure to be as careful as
possible. If you must use a power tool on a ladder use a
battery operated power tool when possible, and if you should
feel yourself falling, you should throw the power tool away
from yourself to a safer area where there are no people.
Above all use your common sense and be as safe as possible.
Use proper safety procedures. Always keep saws and drills
pointed away from you or other people and make sure to have
a firm grip on them with your fingers off the trigger unless
you are preparing to use them. Be aware of your surroundings
and wear the proper safety equipment.
Most power tool manufacturers strive to make their tools as
safe as possible. If you think there may be an issue with
your power tool you should call the manufacturer so that you
can either replace the machine or the flaw can be fixed. The
best manufacturers welcome your comments and strive to make
better and safer machines.
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