Safety Tips for Portable Power Tools

October 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

The use of portable power tools on the construction site is commonplace. So much so, workers may overlook that these tools can pose serious hazards to themselves or others if not used properly. Help reduce or even eliminate the chances of injury by following safe work practices and remaining aware of the potential hazards.
Refer to general safety precautions outlined below for general maintenance, cord safety, and guarding.
General tool maintenance will help to keep your power tools in good condition, so make sure that you:
• Inspect tools daily for any loose or broken parts.
• Keep all tools stored in a dry and safe location.
• Engage the safety lock while carrying a plugged-in tool and refrain from placing your finger on the switch button, as this could accidentally start up the tool.
• Disconnect the tool when servicing, changing an accessory, or when not in use.
Only use the tools if they are in working order. Ensure that they are kept sharp and clean for optimal performance. Maintain your power tools per the manufacturer’s specifications—refer to the user’s manual for lubricating and changing accessories.
Cords can suffer normal wear and tear over time; make sure that you do not:
• Carry a tool by the hose or cord.
• Pull the cord or hose to disconnect it from the receptacle, pull only from the plug.
• Store cords near heat or oil.
• Route the cord through traffic areas where they may be damaged.
• Use cords to lower tools.
• Modify cords or use them incorrectly.
Make sure to report any defective or broken plugs and insulation on cords, and take the tool out of service to be repaired or replaced. Frayed cords should never be repaired, only replaced.
Power tools contain moving parts such as gears, belts, chains, or other rotating parts that need to be guarded. These safe guards help to ensure protection for hands, and other body parts from coming into contact with these moving parts, sparks, or sharp points. Do not modify, remove, or bypass a guard—and under no circumstances operate the tool if the guard is missing or not working correctly.
Ensure that you are wearing the correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and apparel. Avoid wearing loose fitting clothes or jewelry that could become stuck in moving parts. Lastly, practice body mechanics—keep your balance and footing and do not overreach.
Even though power tools are manufactured with safety in mind, if handlers don’t follow safe operating procedures serious accidents and injuries can occur.

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