The Do It Yourself (DIY) phenomenon has spawned many successful TV shows. After watching a few episodes of a home improvement show, one may find themselves at a local tool rental. Many hazards can arise when operating equipment such as chainsaws, mechanical lifts, other power tools and heavy equipment.
Many times, accidents are caused by not being familiar with basic tool safety. However, rented equipment can also be defective and dangerous. Focusing on safe practices can decrease the chances of having an accident and an injury.
Basic tool safety tips
According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, the following are some basic tool safety practices to know:
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): When using power tools, it is important to use proper PPE such as gloves, goggles, steel-toed boots and hard hats.
- Cords: Never carry a tool by its cord or yank on the cord to disconnect it from its power source. Doing so could cause damage to the tool and the user. Additionally, cords should be kept away from sharp edges, liquid and heat sources.
- Securing: When using power tools, it is important to secure the material with vices or clamps. Hands should be free to safely operate the tool and not be distracted when holding the material.
- Accidental starting: Just like with gun safety, one should never casually have their finger on a tool’s trigger or start button when not ready to use it.
- Apparel: Wearing loose hair, jewelry or clothing that can get entangled in machinery should be avoided.
- Balance: Having solid footing and proper footwear can help avoid accidents that arise from balance and falling issues.
If all the necessary safety precautions were taken and a tool was used as it was intended and an accident still occurred, it could be due to a faulty or defective tool. Tool rental companies have a responsibility to properly maintain their equipment to keep users safe. If you believe that your injuries were caused by defective or poorly maintained equipment, it may be time to find out more about your right to compensation for your injuries.