As the economy continues to bump along many homeowners are taking their lumps as they attempt to make home repairs they would normally hire someone else to do. This year 43 million homeowners will take on 57 million home improvement projects. Of those intrepid folks, one in five will be injured, according to the Home Safety Council.
typically send people to the emergency room involve falling off ladders,
getting struck by mower debris, lacerations from a power tool or chain saw and
burns or breathing difficulties caused by household chemicals. “We want to keep
reminding people how easy it is to do a job right by doing it safely,” says
Meri-K Appy, a safety expert with the HSC, who reminded us that June is Home
Safety Month. Here are five of the most common do-it-yourself mishaps—and how
to avoid them.
Climbing a ladder. Falls from ladders and stools sent over 246,733 Americans to hospital emergency rooms in 2009 (the last year for which full statistics are available) according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Experts from the CPSC, HSC and Consumer Reports recommend the following:
Mowing the lawn. Lawn mower-related injuries treated in hospital emergency rooms totaled 86,000 in 2009. The most common injuries were caused by debris, such as rocks and branches, being thrown by the mower's spinning blades. Here’s what to do:
Using power tools. Home power tools resulted in 83,204 emergency room admissions in 2009. The most common injuries involve cuts, especially to the fingers and hands. The Power Tool Institute recommends.
Working with paints and other chemicals. Accidents involving paints, solvents, lubricants and cleaning agents caused 53,907 emergency room admissions in 2009. Injuries often include chemical burns and breathing problems. Here’s how to avoid mishaps:
Using a chain saw. Chain saw accidents sent 26,593 to the emergency room in 2009. Kickback—where the tip of the saw snaps up and back toward the user—is involved in one in four injuries. Cuts to hands, fingers, legs and feet are typical and usually require multiple stitches. Here’s how to stay safe.
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