What are the safety rules for power tools?

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Using power tools in DIY home improvement projects and on construction job sites is commonplace, and most people have become so used to handling them that they often overlook the potential dangers they pose. Unfortunately, this lax attitude leads to thousands of people needing emergency treatment each year due to accidents involving hand and power tools. In many cases, these accidents occur due to misuse, but even those taking the proper precautions can be injured if the necessary safety gear isn’t used.
Power tools can be extremely powerful and dangerous if used improperly. A circular saw, for example, is able to cut through wood or metal quickly but can also cut through flesh and bone just as quickly. As such, it is important to be aware of the risks associated with power tools, such as noise, vibration, electrical and moving parts, and projectiles which can cause severe and even fatal injuries. Unfortunately, accidents and fires caused by power tools occur yearly, so it is important to consider safe use and avoid contributing to injury statistics.
To avoid making costly mistakes, knowing the potential risks and taking all necessary precautions is essential. Here are some tips for novice and experienced users to ensure your safety.

Basic requirements for using power tools

Double rubber insulated tools should be labelled as “Double Insulated”.
Users shall check the insulation of tools and cords before and after each use.
The manufacturer’s original fittings shall not be altered, and improper joints (tape connection) are not.
The tool should not be raised, lowered or carried using its power cord.
Only switch off the power socket switches before plugging or unplugging any electrical hand tools. The power cord shall not be pulled to unplug the tools from the power.
Use of electrical tools, such as electric drills, grinders etc., in hazardous classified areas shall be permitted only under Hot Work Permit conditions.
Keep work areas well-lighted when using electricity.
Keep electric tools in a dry area when not in use.

What should we do when we use power tools

Wearing the proper protective equipment

If you haven’t already done so, purchase safety glasses to protect your eyes from debris, dust, fibreglass, and shavings. Get a pair of earplugs to protect your hearing from loud power tools. You should also invest in gloves that fit your hands and the environment, allowing you to move freely. Furthermore, invest in a proper safety helmet if working at heights or confined spaces. If you cannot engineer out the risk, personal protective equipment (PPE) should be your first precaution.

Dress right

When working, it is important to take certain safety precautions: wear form-fitting clothes and no jewellery or neckties, remove dangling objects, tie back long hair, and wear non-slip boots.
Educate Yourself
Given the potential for life-threatening injuries caused by improper hand or power tool operation, it is non-negotiable to read the instruction manual thoroughly. Manuals provide more than just instructions on how to use the tool; they also provide information on increasing user safety and troubleshooting problems. Know your tool to ensure you are using it safely and correctly.

Regularly Inspect Your Tools

For maximum safety, inspect your tools regularly, regardless of whether they are new or not. Look for signs of wear and tear, such as cracks, breakages, damaged plugs and exposed wires. If you’re at work, request a replacement of any damaged tools with proper ones. Remember, using a damaged tool is a way to put yourself in harm’s way.

Keep Your Work Area Clean

Maintaining a safe environment is essential for your safety; you should keep the workspace clean and clear away any cords that may be tangled on the floor. Additionally, it’s important to store tools away from flammable liquids and ensure the space is secure for children if you’re at home. Finally, take extra precautions, such as removing starter keys and master switches and using padlocks when you can.

Be Extra Cautious With Power Tools

Power tools are invaluable to many projects, as they are more powerful than hand tools and require electricity for operation. For example, having a quality circular saw can help you finish a project quickly and easily. However, due to their power, these tools can be dangerous. Therefore, it is important to remember never to carry corded tools by their cords, keep wires away from sharp edges and heat sources, and avoid holding your finger on the trigger when carrying a power tool.

Be Extra Cautious With Power Tools

Turn the Tools Off After Use

To ensure safety and prevent injuries or accidents, always turn off your tools after use, unplug them, and store them in their original casing. If working at home, place them somewhere out of children’s reach. Leaving tools in “stand by” mode or plugged in should be avoided as it can cause serious problems for those unaware of the tool’s power.

Use Proper Lighting

Poor lighting is often overlooked as a potential hazard in the workplace, but it can be just as dangerous as any other safety risk. Power tools, in particular, can be deadly when used in dimly lit conditions, so ensuring that your work area is adequately lit is essential. Make sure to use or bring in additional lights if your existing light isn’t bright enough and you have plenty of bright, shadow-free light to see what you’re doing.

We should all pay close attention to the safety guidelines when using power tools. Taking the time to understand how to use them correctly, and following all safety instructions, can help ensure that we and those around us stay safe. With proper care and attention, we can all enjoy the benefits of power tools without harming ourselves or others.

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What are the safety rules for power tools?

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