Line of Fire Safety
The term “line of fire” is very common when talking about the hazards of a work task. Depending on the work being completed, there may be many different lines of fire or there could be very few. It is important to understand what the “line of fire” is and how to avoid being in it to avoid injuries.
What is the “Line of Fire”?
A simple definition of “line of fire” is being in harm’s way. Line of fire injuries occur when the path of a moving object intersects with an individual’s body.
Three major categories of line of fire incidents are caught-in or between incidents, struck-by incidents, and released energy incidents. There are many specific examples of hazards for each of these categories. A few quick examples for each category:
- Caught-in or between-A construction worker is standing between a wall and an excavator. When the excavator spins around the counter weight pins the worker against the wall. Another example would be a worker placing his hand too close to a rotating gear and gets it pulled into the gear
- Struck-by– A pedestrian struck-by a moving vehicle or an object falling from a higher level striking a worker below are examples of struck-by incidents
- Released energy– A pipe releasing hot steam from a valve that is being removed or metal banding snapping back at an employee after being cut are examples of released energy.