Tools are such a common part of our lives that it is east to forget that they pose serious hazards.  Hand tools range from axes to wrenches, and we need to keep them in top working condition in order to keep ourselves in good working condition, as well!  We need to protect ourselves with goggles, safety glasses, gloves; in other words, choose the right personal protection when using hand tools.

  • Wooden handles on hammers or other tools that are split or splintered should not be used, as the head of the tool could fly off, possibly resulting in pain for someone!
  • If wrench jaws are sprung, the wrench could slip.
  • Saw blades, knives, should always be turned away from employees working close by.
  • Mushroomed heads on impact tools, such as hammers, may cause shattering on impact.
  • Dull knives and scissors are more unsafe than sharp ones.
  • Pliers should not be substituted for wrenches.
  • Use the correct size of tool.
  • Store tools in safe places.
  • Iron/steel hand tools may produce sparks that could possibly be an ignition source close to flammable substances.
  • Employees and individual do-it-yourselfers should be properly trained in using hand tools.
  • Be aware that working with certain hand tools pose risks to fingers, hands and eyes.

These four basic rules can prevent hazards:
1.    Keep all tools regularly maintained and in good condition.

2.    Use the right tool for the job.

3.    Check each tool for damage before use, and don’t use tools that you find are damaged.

4.    Use the right personal protective equipment.

So, when you are do-it-yourself-ing: remember these tips!  If so, you will deserve to give yourself a hand, and a pat on the back!