20 Important Hand Safety Tips to Prevent Hand Injury

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Hand Safety Tips

Hand safety is a very important aspect of safety. To ascertain the importance of the hand, can you think about something you can do without your hand?

You will agree with me that almost everything you do requires your hand either directly or indirectly, this is why you have to keep your hand safe.

Due to the importance of the hand, programs have been initiated to enhance hand safety; these include:

  • Hand safety presentations
  • Toolbox talk on hand safety
  • Hand safety tips
  • Training on hand safety.

All these have a singular aim of protecting the hand; hand injury can affect your job and quality of life seriously.

Why is Hand Safety Important

How did you feel the last time you had a cut on your hand, your hand got crushed, or you got hit by an external object? If you remember vividly, you will agree with me that you felt so uncomfortable.

Here are some reasons why hand safety is important:

  • Since our hands are needed for performing everyday tasks and activities, injuries to the hands will greatly hinder our ability to work, and take care of ourselves.
  • Also since our hands are very and vulnerable to a wide range of hazards, such as cuts, burns, fractures, and crush injuries, it is necessary to protect our hands through the use of PPE, proper handling techniques, to help prevent these injuries and ensure the well-being of our hands.

List of Hazards that Could Result in Hand Injury

There are lots of hazards on our work sites that could result in hand injury. These hazards include:

  • Exposure to sharp, spiked, or jagged edges on equipment, tools, or materials.
  • Falling objects, and using rings, gloves, or loose clothing which may get caught by equipment.
  • Using the wrong hand tool for the job.
  • Direct contact with a hot surface or a chemical.

All the above-mentioned hazards could result in different forms of cuts (Incision or laceration), crushing of the hand, puncture, fracture, amputation, strain, sprain, burns, etc.

Hand injury could be mild, moderate, or severe. Since we cannot predict the possible consequences of hand hazards, ensuring hand safety becomes our best option.

Hand Safety Tips You Should Never Neglect

  1. Get adequate hand safety training: Every employee must be trained in Hand Safety, this is because no one is working with his hands. The training will cover – What is Hand Safety, Hazards that could affect the hand, and how to prevent hand injury.
  2. Perform hazard analysis for hand safety: Hazard analysis of the type of hazard the employees could be exposed to should be carried out. Because a hazard not identified cannot be controlled.
  3. Use the right-hand tool for a job: Workers should be advised on the need to use the right tool for the job; using a wrong tool increases the likelihood of hand injury by over 50%.
  4. Put faulty equipment out from use: Never use faulty or damaged working equipment as it predisposes you hand injury.
  5. Avoid using loose clothing, rings, and bangles while working with rotating wheels: Loose clothing, bangles, and other body accessories could get entangled resulting in hand injury when using rotating wheels; so you need to put them out.
  6. Avoid getting direct contact with hazardous chemicals: Always get protected when working with hazardous chemicals, the best way to protect your hand from hazardous chemicals is by using your hand gloves.
  7. Do not keep long nails: Long nails increase the chance of hand injury, so always cut your nails.
  8. Do not extend your hand into an invisible area since you may get hurt in the process: You could lose your hand by doing this; I have witnessed this firsthand, so stay safe.
  9. Use hand protection always: This cannot be overemphasized, to protect your hand you need hand protection devices.
  10. Inspect equipment before use: Inspect equipment before use to identify faulty ones and put them out of use.
  11. Never work with unguarded equipment: Guards are made to protect you, when they are not in place that means you are at risk.
  12. Beware of pinch points: Never get caught up, always pay attention to pinch points.
  13. Do not test for energized wires with your hand: Your hand is not a tester, so protect your hand.
  14. Be mindful of equipment that starts automatically: Make sure the equipment is completely isolated before you work on them
  15. Discard damaged gloves; it may give you a false sense of safety: False safety is very dangerous. There is no partial protection, it’s either you are protected or not. What you can partial protection will still result in injury.
  16. Beware of hot surfaces: Never touch a hot surface with your hand, you can get burnt.
  17. Do not put your hands or fingers near the moving parts of a power tool or equipment.
  18. Do not just use hand gloves, use the right-hand gloves for the right job.
  19. Work smart rather than working fast.
  20. Do not clean or repair equipment until it is completely turned off.

Your hand is your earning power, keep it safe.

External Resources

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