Rios Law Firm PLLC

Landscapers beware of the hazards posed by chainsaws

While workers in all industries in Arizona face safety risks every day, each occupation also has its unique hazards. For example, landscapers are not only exposed to environmental hazards like weather conditions, insect bites and dangerous chemicals, but also power tools like chainsaws. The tools are inherently dangerous, and a lack of adequate safety training can result in serious injuries that might include severe lacerations and even amputations.

Employers must protect the safety and health of employees, and that responsibility includes providing all the necessary safety training. One of the common chainsaw accidents is caused when the worker encounters a knot or another hard object in the wood while sawing a tree trunk. This often causes the chainsaw to kick back toward the operator. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 110 stitches are typically required for the average cut caused by a chainsaw.

Chainsaw operators must thoroughly study the operation manual before using the tool, taking specific note of the safety instructions. Guards are installed for a reason, and should never be removed, nor must other safety features be altered. Most chainsaws have lockout switches to prevent unintentional activation, and overriding it can have devastating consequences. Employers must also ensure that employees wear the necessary personal protective equipment that includes face shields, hardhats, protective chaps, steel toe boots, earplugs and gloves.

With warmer weather not too far off, landscapers in Arizona will have heavy workloads, and accidents might happen. Victims of chainsaw accidents will likely face high medical expenses and extended periods of absence from work. An experienced workers' compensation attorney can assist with the navigation of benefits claims to obtain compensation that will ease the financial burden.

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