What is the importance of power tool safety? Has this thought occurred to you, given the importance of the subject in the industry?
The process of ensuring that you, others around you, your property, and the environment are free of objects and circumstances that could cause injury, damage, or pollution is known as safety. As a result, the importance of safety is that no accident, damage, or pollution should occur.
In the workplace, safety is a critical component of success. Safety comes first in the hierarchy of requirements for workers since it is crucial to an employee’s physiological wellness. As a result, for appropriate cohesion in the workplace, safety is critical. Any worker unconcerned about their safety should not be permitted to continue working since they will be a nuisance to themselves and others.
It is impossible to overestimate the importance of power tool safety. It’s the same as asking, “Why is feeding important?” The answer is simple: if you don’t eat for a while, you would become sick and die. Likewise, failure to use power tools for their intended purpose or operate them safely might have significant consequences.
Working Using Power Tools
When it comes to handling power tools, you must understand why safety is so crucial. If you don’t follow the manufacturer’s instructions, there’s a good chance you’ll have an accident. Employers will not want to keep a person who does not follow safety rules unless they are unaware of the repercussions for their company.
Each year, thousands of minor and severe incidents using power tools are reported. There have even been reports of deaths as a result of this. By just using power tools for their intended purposes as specified by the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), you can reduce your probability of being involved in a power tool accident. You should also pay attention to their advice for the correct safety equipment when using a specific power tool.
Common Power Tool Accidents
Several accidents involving power tools have been reported in the oil and gas industry alone. The most common power tool incidents involve finger injuries. It might range from a slight cut to the complete loss of a finger. Injuries using power tools account for over half of all finger amputations in the United States each year.
For this reason, when operating with any power tool, you must keep an eye on yourself and others around you. The index and middle fingers are the two fingers that are most commonly implicated in an accident. The various industrial saws are the most widely used power tools that cause this type of injury. It’s reported that the majority of these finger injuries occurred while using a power tool at home.
Most accidents caused by hand and power tools can be avoided if only you follow procedures. When working with a device that has the potential to alter your life in a split second drastically, there’s no need to rush. Allowing others to push you is not a good idea! Instead, take your time and do what’s right by following the OEM operating procedures.
According to OSHA, many power tool injuries occur when the power source is not disconnected when changing parts on the tool. Isn’t it straightforward to turn off the power before opening the device? No, because most employees fail to flip the switch before changing parts in the heat of the moment. However, injuries happen because the injured person is in a hurry to do the job.
Using Power Tools
It makes no difference how much power tool experience you have or how fast you can change the part. Before you open any power tool, be sure it is turned off and disconnected from the power source. When working with smaller power tools, it’s easy to feel comfortable, yet these are the ones that cause the most problems.
The most prevalent culprits are drill bits and saw blades. Unplugging the power supply takes only a few seconds. If you’re working with a cordless power tool, it’s a good idea to remove the battery before making any changes. It will prevent you from mistakenly turning on the device when you’re intended to be replacing parts. Your safety is worth the inconvenience. Take your time to do what is right.
Problems with Corded vs. Cordless Power Tools
Another issue with power tools is their cords, which, if not secured properly, can cause accidents. However, the majority of corded power tools are effective in terms of delivery power and durability. In addition, because they run on AC power, you won’t have to bother about recharging their batteries.
By switching to cordless power tools, many power tool accidents have been avoided. Cordless equipment, on the other hand, may not have the same power as corded tools. If you’re going to use a power tool with a cord, make sure it’s properly secured. Please don’t leave the cable lying around where you or others could trip over it.
Make sure the cords aren’t worn out because there’s a risk of electrocution. You can quickly solve this problem by inspecting and securing the cables. It also includes the possibility of using an extension cord in a secure path.
Keep the wires out of wet, damp areas, and make sure there’s nothing in the vicinity that could be spilled on them by accident. Taking these steps and any preventative precautions specific to your situation will significantly lessen the likelihood of an injury occurring. In addition, safety using hand and power tools is critical for your health. So be sure you’re doing what’s best for you and those around you.
There are instances when all of the necessary precautions are taken, but accidents still occur. Even if you operate the power tool correctly and wear the appropriate safety equipment, accidents can happen in the blink of an eye.
Is this a sign that the injured party is to blame? Not if the IP took all necessary precautions to safeguard themselves. In instances like this, personal protective equipment (PPE) is the last line of defense, but many people do not use it properly.
As you can see, industrial accidents can happen at any time because the equipment can fail even if it has been routinely maintained. An injury can arise from tripping, slipping, or falling while holding a power tool. These are the most typical accident causes to be aware of, but keep an eye out for the less obvious ones that might be deadly.
There was an incident of a young man who lost his footing while operating a staple gun on a ladder with safety equipment ON. He fell from the ladder and was pierced in the head by many large nails, but he didn’t die due to it, although he could have. Unfortunately, this is just one of a series of tragic events.
So, what can the power tool’s operators do to safeguard themselves? “Use the right tools in the right way for the job” is one of the essential keys you should imbibe any time you pick up any power to use it. Also, keep your work environment in good shape. You’ll be safe if you’re aware of the next worker and the equipment in your area.
It cannot be overemphasized how important it is to “maintain awareness of the work environment around you” to avoid unwanted injuries. Never allow yourself to become complacent. So many people’s lives have been adversely impacted by complacency, and some never returned to work again.
When you start to feel too comfortable in your assignment, my recommendation for avoiding complacency is to request a change of duty. If your request is denied, alter your mindset or change jobs rather than continuing to be a ticking time bomb in that position. The longer you stay in a job you don’t enjoy, particularly one that requires the use of power tools, the more likely you or another employee may be injured.
Power Tool Safety: What You Must Do to Protect Yourself
Never work in isolation. My preference is to have a buddy system in place. That is, assign critical work to a team of two persons at least. Have a plan for issuing safety permits for critical operations, one of which is the use of power tools. Before signing off on the permit to work, the permit issuer must inspect the workplace to ensure all safety precautions are implemented.
Where do you need a permit to work? First, you must check Safety-critical operations before allowing them to proceed. The reason is so that a third party will observe the job and confirm that it is safe to proceed as planned. In addition, it makes it possible for the permit issuer to ascertain the level of work.
Finally, the permit issuer must station a safety representative to oversee susceptible operations for safety-critical work, ensuring that personnel does not deviate from the plan without approval.
Some Basic Safety Tips to Implement Before Starting Work
Before you start working, here are some essential safety tips to keep in mind:
- Make sure your work area is secure to help reduce power tool accidents.
- Use caution and common sense when working with power tools.
- It would assist if you properly secured ladders, especially when working at heights.
- Working on a slippery or unstable surface is never a good idea. With a power tool in your hand, it’s a risk you don’t want to take.
- Before you do anything, make sure the area is leveled, and the ladder is adequately restrained. Again, I recognize that not all workplaces are in the most acceptable conditions but do what’s necessary to protect yourself.
Construction workers, carpenters, and scaffolders will benefit from this OSHA ANSI Fall Protection INTERNAL Shock Absorbing Lanyard shown above. It’s a safety device that provides COMPLETE FALL PROTECTION.
Winning Tactics for Power Tool Safety?
To help reduce the number of power tool accidents, do your part to use them in the best possible way. STOP working if you see anything that isn’t quite right. Do not be afraid to intervene if a coworker is misbehaving! Reassess the situation and only go through with the work if it is safe.
The information on this website isn’t intended to scare you; instead, it’s to remind you that power tools are dangerous and that you must use them carefully. Hopefully, all of your power tool experiences will be safe. But always remember that you are responsible for your safety.
As you do your part, so will the manufacturers of power tools. They are very aware of the types of accidents and injuries that occur with power tools. As a result, they strive to improve their power tool safety to help reduce the risk. Please get in touch with that particular power tool manufacturer if you have any concerns or ideas.
Your power tool manufacturers will do their part to ensure that the tools are produced to standard while you continue to do your part in providing a safe working environment. Remember: you’re not working alone: the producers of those power tools are well aware of the various types of power tool-related injuries and accidents. And they’re working hard for your safety as well.
They want to improve their power tools so that they can substantially reduce hazards. However, it is up to you to promote workplace safety by documenting unsafe conditions. Those incidents about tools should be forwarded as soon as possible to the tool manufacturers for closeout.
Most manufacturers encourage feedback, so please do not hesitate to contact the power tool manufacturer if you have any suggestions for making their work safer. Your employer may be able to assist with facilitating the process of reaching out to them. Notify your employer and keep in touch with them until the event is reported to the OEM.