Hand Injuries - Part 5 - Awareness and Placement

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Each year there are thousands of disabling injuries to the hands as people place their hands in places they would not normally think of placing them. Amputations, crushing injuries and the like occur as people touch moving or rotating parts on equipment and tools. Failure to use guards, kill-switches, or to follow appropriate lock-out procedures are among the leading hand hazards.

In many cases people are in a hurry and don’t think about the risk associated in doing such or aren’t aware of their proximity to the hazard in the first place. Everytime you are near a moving piece of equipment your risk increases. It’s important to decrease that risk by not touching, leaning or in other ways coming in contact with the running machine.

Some hand injuries occur because people don’t know they were near the hazard. If you are RIGHT handed you need to pay particular notice of the position of your LEFT hand. We are accustomed to using one hand for many tasks and we “lose track” of the position of the less dominant hand. This less dominate hand ends up leaning or touching something as we are working and that increases our risk when around equipment.


This toolbox topic was reviewed by ______________________________________ on ___________________________ with the following employees:

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