I gotta disagree, accidents are also caused by events that are totally not
in your control. If you are laying in bed and a plane crashes in to you
bedroom and you loose an arm, you were involved in an accident and there is
no way that you could have prepared for that event. You could have a power
outage loose your lights in your shop. The shop goes black and you cut your
self. None of these accidents would have been your fault.
Simply getting out of bed in the morning sets your self up for a potential
and unforeseen accident. Granted most of our mishaps are our own fault but
many are not.
Now we are talking about mistakes by other people not in my control. These
are still mistakes, just not made by me and which I could control the effect
of on me. The power outage could be controled by the proper generator set
up, very expensive though, the plane I have no control over except to locate
in an area where there are no planes. Every event can be planed for whether
natural or man made. Not doing mitigation for them is a mistake that can be
avoided. There fore both of your examples are avoidable mistakes. Often
the mitigation for an event is too expensive to allow for it. I do not
mitigate for meteortie damage to my home, the odds of it happening are to
great for me to worry about it, I do have earthquake insurance and have done
earthquake mitigation to my home and community. My mistake for not doing
full mitigation for all disasters both natural and manmade, but not an
accident if I suffer from the results, just the effect of my mistake. You
get up in the morning and you take your chances and live with your choices.
Off the topic a bit, I spent 20 years writing mitigation and response plans
for manmade and natural disasters. Some of them worked, others were delt
with by politicians.
BS! The power outage could be a lightning strike on your service
entrance -- you got an instantaneous emergency backup system at _your_
There ain't nowhere on the planet that doesn't have an airplane of some
sort, some time...
A generator system can be hardned against a 10+megaton Nuke with EMP strike,
this would definatly defend it against your average lightning strike. Not a
cheap system but not as uncommon as you might think. No I don't have one
and don't won't one, I will endure the results of that mistake when it
happens. I have not said that you should mitigate against all hazzards just
that you can if you are willing to. As far as the plane is concerned a
properly built bunker would be one method of stopping that problem, I am
sure that there are others if you want to look them up. You work on the
problems that you feel are worthwhile to you.
PLONK (back at you)
I think you should face the fact that you are only human just like us. You
have accidents because YOU cannot foresee events before they happen
therefore you cannot plan for every possible event. That does not mean that
you are at fault, or that you have made a mistake. There are events that
happen that have only one explanation and that does not involve any human
I am human but I do try to preplan for events (not always as well as I would
like) with all the knowledge and skill I have.
Those event that do not envolve human influence are not accidents but acts
of God and are not in the realm of planning. I would not dare try to tell
God how to do anything.
Precisely and because God is all knowing and in total control, EVERYTHING
that happens is and or was destined to happen regardless of whether you
think you are or were well prepared for an event or not. No amount of
planning or preparation on your part is going to change the inevitable.
Now, you are changing your tune. You originally said that you did not have
an accident in your shop and then commented that you have had lots of
accidents. Even if the accident is caused by some one elses mistake and you
are involved, you personally have had an accident whether it was your fault
The power outage could be controled by the proper generator set
Every event can be planned for if you know every possible event. You being
human like me should know that is impossible.
Not doing mitigation for them is a mistake that can be
Ok, tell me how you are going to plan and avoid the next accident. You
knowing that all possibilities are preventable should know what is going to
happen before it happens. If you don't know what is going to happen next
illustrates an accident that you will be involved in.
To Avoid an "ACCIDENT"
First you must do a threat assesment:
What are the possible "accidents" that can occur from using this tool,
walking under this light, standing in this location or what ever.
What are the liklyhoods of this "accident" or event occuring?
What is the damage that will occur if this event takes place?
Second you rate the threats and start to mitigate the most likely down to
the least likely.
Third you plan actions to lesson the impact of the event if you were wrong
in you mitigation efforts or unable to totaly mitigate the event.
This is done each and every time conditions change in any action you take.
You are ripping a board on a TS
flying sawdust hitting you
putting finger in blade and cutting your self
1 Flying sawdust hitting you
3 cutting finger
1 little or none unless gets in eyes
2 Moderate to severe
1 Safety glasses or face shield, Dust collector
2 Blade guard with splitter, riving knife, wedges to keep wood
from closing on blade, push sticks to help wood go past blade, antikickback
device on saw etc..
3 Keep saw blade at lowest possible level, blade guard, pushsticks,
sawstop device on saw or sawstop saw
1 Eye wash to remove sawdust, phone with 911 programed in
2 Place to sit down and recover to phone with 911 programed in
3 phone with 911 programed in or someone to take you to the
These are steps you take everytime you do anything. Most of the time you
don't even know it but you do them at some level. Failure to plan for any
event or possible event is a mistake and you learn from them, Threat
assisment is learned, not knowing that a table saw can kickback is not the
cause of an accident but the result of a mistake in knowledge. Why all the
labels and warnings on tools? to educate you of possible hazards and allow
you to do threat assisment and mitigation of your use of the tool. Response
is the action you take when your plan failed for what ever reason. Many of
the threads here are about this very subject, should I wear a leather apron
to help lessen the effect of a kickback is about mitigation. How to prevent
kickback is about threat assesment and mitigation. I dont know what the
next "Accident" that will occur in my shop or life, I do know that I can
lesson the chances of having one by learning and using that knowledge to
prevent mistakes and use the mistakes I make to lesson the posibility of it
I have to do this same argument Friday to convince city/county officials of
a possible gas explsion hazard from two propane farms and how to prevent the
event from happening and if it does what the effect on the community will
be. This has been good practice.
You should understand that being careful and taking preventative measures
will NEVER be enough to prevent all accidents. Realizing this goes more
towards accident prevention than believing that all accidents can be
When you believe that all accidents can be prevented you come to a stopping
point in your mind as to how much is enough to prevent an accident.
When you know that you simply cannot prevent all accidents that you will be
involved in regardless of how much you think you know you will be several
steps ahead of where you are now in preventing a possible accident.
Risk mitigation is possible. Risk elimination is not.
I am as careful as I think reasonable around my table saw. That said, my
left hand is most often near the blade, so my shop phone sits to my right.
I know better than to imagine that I can eliminate all the injuries in
my shop. I accept that SOME blood will be spilled ... mine. It has been
in the past and it will be again. I have a first aid kit about 4 steps
away for the smaller stuff and a cordless phone at arms length for the
problems too big for self-administered first aid.
I also try to keep my relationship with God on a good foundation because
there are things that even 911 can't handle.
I'm not not at the above address.
That would be the tool which I haven't used before and don't feel
I have yet to pick up a tool without asking myself the
question...whilst studying the tool.."How can this piece of gear mess
"If this thing jams, where will I end up?"
"What part of this tool can eat me?"
When you don't know, Frank...don't plug the the thing into the
outlet.... you see, when God created powertools, He didn't know that
they made a secret pact to take eye-balls and fingers and toes without
permission from the rightful owners.
It is part of the origiunal sin and 8 deadly sins-package (The 8th
being the staining of cherry)
Well since you mentioned chain saws ...yesterday was one of those
"days"......I was using a small electric chain saw on a poll extension,
trimming a flowering pear tree (very brittle) along the sidewalk.....a 5inch
diameter branch where the lateral leaf canopy almost reached the power line
into the house, was just asking to be cut. I had cut about 2/3rds through
the branch when I stopped (depth of cut or visibility really sucks with
those poll trimmers) and I moved to the other side to finish the cut...as I
moved (thankfully) the branch split and lunged sideways and down into the
power line......It yanked the steel support cable out and snapped the mast
off of the house......The wire itself stayed intact although it was now a
couple of feet off of the sidewalk and not much higher across the street and
obviously under great tension with a branch stretched across it.....me
thinks branches of that size, at least without a helper and a rope to
control the fall should be avoided with a electric poll trimmer.....Rod
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