Power Tool Safety 101: How to Stay Safe When Using Power Tools
Does your job require you to use power tools? Whether you work in the construction, manufacturing, maritime or any other blue-collar industry, you may use power tools on a daily basis.
Power tools are undoubtedly more convenient than manual tools. With a powered mechanism, they can typically apply more force and with greater ease. With that said, power tools are responsible for thousands of work-related injuries each year. As a result, you should follow these safety tips when using power tools to protect against injury.
Wear Eye Protection
Always wear eye protection when using a power tool. Power tools can cause eye injury by sending shrapnel shooting up towards your face. By wearing eye protection, you can rest assured knowing that any shrapnel such as this won't reach your eyes. Assuming you use impact-resistant eye protection, the shrapnel will simply bounce off while leaving your eyes unscathed.
Avoid Loose-Fitted Clothing
Don't wear loose-fitted clothing when using a power tool. The problem with loose-fitted clothing is that it may get caught inside or around the tool bit. If you're drilling a screw into a wall while wearing a loose long-sleeve shirt, for instance, a sleeve may catch the drill bit. When this occurs, it may pull your hand or arm into the drill bit.
Keep Away Hands
Regardless of your clothing, you should keep your hands away from the tool bit at all times. If your hand slips, it may fall within the tool bit's path. No matter what power tool you are using, keep your hands from its tool bit at all times.
Watch the Cord
A loose or exposed cord can lead to injury when using a power tool. You or someone else could trip over the cord, thereby causing a slip-and-fall accident. Not all power tools have a cord. Rather, only non-battery-powered electrical power tools generally have a cord. If you intend to use a corded power tool, though, you should strategically place the cord so that it's out of the way.
Inspect and Maintain
It's important to inspect and maintain power tools on a regular basis. Failure to do so could lead to a mechanical problem that increases the risk of injury. Most power tools come with an owner's manual that, among other things, contains information on how to inspect and maintain them. By properly inspecting and maintaining your power tools on a regular basis, they are less likely to suffer from mechanical failure that places you in harms way.
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