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Chainsaw Safety for Workers

by | Aug 13, 2013 | OSHA Violations, Workers' Compensation

Many individuals in the construction, carpentry, or lumber industries have to use high-powered chain saws on a daily basis. These efficient machines can be extremely dangerous, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is concerned about the safety of workers using this tool. According to OSHA, workers who learn to operate their chainsaws properly and maintain the saw in good working condition can often avoid injury and may be able to be more productive. Before starting the saw, workers should make sure to check all controls, the chain tension, and all bolts to make sure that they are working as designed.

Chainsaws typically need to be fueled, and workers need to complete this process at least 10 feet away from any sources of ignition. While running the saw, it is important that workers keep their hands on the handles and maintain secure footing while operating the chainsaw. Also, workers need to clear their area of any obstacles that might interfere with cutting the tree or any items that would block a retreat path in the event of an emergency.

Workers should never work with the chainsaw directly overhead, and should shut off or release the throttle for the saw before retreating. They should also shut off or engage the chain brake when the saw is carried more than 50 feet or when the saw is carried down hazardous terrain where a worker could slip and fall. It is also important that workers prepare for kickback when they start their saw.

All chainsaw users should use personal protective equipment when operating a chainsaw. This includes a helmet, ear protection, eye protection face protection, hand protection and leg protection. All equipment should be inspected prior to each work shift to ensure that it is in serviceable condition. If you have been injured in a construction accident and believe that your company did not follow the OSHA guidelines, then you need to contact a New York workers ‘compensation attorney to discuss your options today.