HAND INJURY PREVENTION
IT CAN BE A MATTER OF AN INCH – THAT GETS YOUR FINGERS IN A PINCH
How can we prevent pinch point injuries?
Pinch points are those situations where machines, hand tools, and conditions put our hands, feet, and sometimes our entire body in danger. An injury can come from something as small as a pair of pliers, or as large as an excavator. Hand injuries alone account for one third of the millions of disabling on-the-job accidents occurring each year. 80% of these hand injuries are caused by pinch points.
Many pinch point situations cannot be avoided, but if you are constantly alert you can protect yourself from injuries. Identifying the pinch point hazards and methods to mitigate them are essential to preventing injuries. The best way to mitigate pinch points is with physical barriers. Physical barriers can be machine guards, barricades, blocks to prevent equipment from moving, and warning signs to identify common pinch point areas on equipment. Proper body and hand position while performing a task is also a key way to prevent injuries from pinch points.
Although the last line of defense against a pinch point injury, PPE (proper gloves, footwear) is a necessity to ensure your extremities are protected.