be careful in the shop; another wake up call.

Hey Gang, I just got off the phone with my woodworking/windsurfing buddy. He was being driven to the local hospital for emergency eye surgery because he just put a nail into his cornea. I was amazed as to how relaxed and calm he was as he was telling me how he did it (I guess it's no use to sound excited at this point.) He told me he had driven a brad through a piece of wood and decided to cut off the exposed end with some diagonal cutters. As he snipped it the piece was propelled right into his eye. Shit, it takes less than a second to ruin your life. I am a steadfast safety nut and this just reinforces my vigilance to always have the correct sfety gear on for the job. I hope that by you reading this it will also keep you from ending up in the ER or worse. Marc (who is now bummed out because of his friend)
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One of the reasons I use a face shield, in preference to goggles: it's _so easy_ to use that there is simply *no* excuse for not using it *any* time there is even the smallest eye hazard.

Sorry to hear about your buddy. I hope the docs are able to get him fixed up with no lasting harm -- they probably will. An injured cornea will heal in time.
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IIRC Swingman had a very similar incident happen to him however I think his glasses saved the day.
Hope you friend does well. About 35 years ago a good friend of mine, we were both 20, was polishing his car with an electric polisher. He laid the screwdriver he used to open the can of polish near the polisher and as you may have guessed the screwdriver was caught and thrown in to his eye. He can see light and dark but nothing else out of that eye.
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On 1/9/2010 1:41 PM, marc rosen wrote:

Years ago (before I got lazik surgery) I used to wear hard contact lenses (the little ones, about 5/16" in diameter). One day I had something metal chucked up in my vise (don't remember what it was) and was beating on it with a claw hammer when I suddenly felt something hit me dead center in the right eye. The only pain I felt was that of a damaged contact lens, and when I removed it there was perfect little hole knocked right out of the center of the lens! Luckily, my eye was fine but I can't imagine what the result would have been if I hadn't been wearing that little piece of "eye protection"...
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<snip>
I suffered a "massive corneal abrasion" once (not from woodwork). It hurt like hell for days. Then it got worse:
At night while I slept, the scar tissue growing on the cornea would literally grow into the back side of my eyelid, so that when I woke up and opened my eye, it would tear off again. And it hurt like hell again. It went on for weeks, with diminishing effects. I learned to wake up without opening my eyes, and rub the wound gently before opening my eyet. That and petroleum jelly salve a few times a day. The opthamologist said it happens in about 5% of corneal injuries.
The GOOD NEWS: My cornea healed perfectly. That's usually the case for abrasions.
And, after taking numerous loss and injury prevention classes and training sessions at work, I wear safety glasses ALL the time in the shop. I'm clumsy by nature.
-Zz
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I wear glasses anyway, and the lenses are small, but of a fairly tough polycarbonate. In the workshop (mostly to be honest, to protect my glasses!) I switch to a pair of big ugly aviator frames with side shields. For risky stuff I wear a faceshield too (I never wear goggles).
The amount of crap I've found embedded in the lenses of my glasses over the years! Weld spatter, angle grinder spatter... If it wasn't for my glasses, I just know I'd have damaged my eyes by now. I wear my glasses because otherwise I'd never find the door, but if you don't, put your safeties on whenever you're near the stuff, not just when you're planning something perilous.
My Dad had a haulage business, which for many years meant scrap metal, particularly metal swarf from a local factory. He was a regular down at the local eye hospital to get things cleaned out (often the huge electromagnet, which as a kid I thought was pretty cool). That was just from shovelling the stuff around, not firing it with any speed. It's not the one you're expecting that gets you, it's the trivial little thing that's too minor to worry about.
Good luck to your mate and his cornea.
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Marc, sorry to hear about your friend. Hope all turns out ok. Thanks for the warning/heads-up. Brian
www.garagewoodworks.com
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On 1/9/2010 2:41 PM, marc rosen wrote:

If after he gets back and starts to see a lot of floaters in his eye, please have him get to the doctor immediately as that is a sign of a detaching/detached cornea.
A year ago my wife went though that and had to go to the hospital where the reattached the cornea. She later had to have a cataract fixed in the same eye. It was a long year. Today she see just fine. (She paints in acrylics and displays her painting in regional shows.)
However a friend of my brother had the same thing and put it off. Today he has extremely limited vision in that eye.
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Negative. That is a (possible) sign of a detaching *retina*. Floaters are inside the eyeball. The cornea is the outer surface of the eye in front of the pupil.
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Actually floaters are very common, I have had them for at least the last 45 years, IIRC since I had the measles. IIRC floaters are often seen in people that have had excessive eye stress/strain.
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On 1/9/2010 7:38 PM, Leon wrote:

Got one I recognize so well I've almost named it ...
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Naturally,,,, we would have them, wouldn't we. :~)
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marc rosen wrote:

My brother stuck a 16d in his eye - he was framing doing the tap and sink when the sink stroke grazed the nail and flipped it back into his eye. He has about 50% in that eye.
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On Sat, 09 Jan 2010 11:41:36 -0800, marc rosen wrote:

Safety goggles are of course the proper answer. But I've been known to just lay a scrap or a ruler or even another pair of pliers/cutters over the top to deflect the snipped part. Or, where possible, turn the piece upside down so the ejecta hits the floor or the bench.
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My cat likes the second option. :)
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On Sat, 9 Jan 2010 11:41:36 -0800 (PST), the infamous marc rosen

Damn, I always wear my glasses or goggles, but when I do things like that, I put my fingertip over the end of the nail before snipping to keep it from becoming a projectile.
Maybe your friend will THINK next time, even if he doesn't put on goggles.
That was truly a Darwin Moment.
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In 1950 I was building a cabin in the Colorado mountains. rode my motorcycle to cabin (about 60 miles) to trim some pine tree branches with an hand axe. One of the branches fliped back and hit dead center in one eye. Should have had my goggles on. Cut the center of eye and was painful. Had trouble riding home. It did heal but left a scar so center vision was blurry. This improved in a couple years and full vision was restored. How ever to this day that eye is set back a quarter inch into head compared to other eye. Lesson learned. WW
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Hey Guys, I passed along your well wishes to my friend. He had eye surgery Saturday night and was seen again by the surgeons on Sunday morning and will go in again tomorrow morning as well. They were more optimistic today than last night and are hopeful he will retain his vision but they are certain he will need a corneal transplant. Only time will tell. Anyway, thanks to the bunch of you for expressing your concerns and suggestions. Marc
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Yep it sure does. My brother in law was pulling a nail out of a stud during a basement framing project. The nail was overhead and he was wearing prescription safety glasses with side shields. The nail flipped off of the claw of his hammer and managed to get between his eyebrow and the glasses. He too sustained cornea damage. He has regained much of his sight in that eye but has to take eyedrops constantly to prevent dryness. Still, lucky if you can call a freak accident lucky.
RonB
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RonB wrote:

I don't mind being reminded to be careful. I need to upgrade my safety apparel.
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