Operating a chainsaw can be dangerous if one does not take certain safety precautions. In case you are not sure what these are, here are some safety tips that you must know before operating a chainsaw.
Read on as I explain these points in detail, which will ensure you operate the chainsaw safely and efficiently in the future.
1. Wear the Required Safety Gear
It is very important to wear safety gear while operating a machine as powerful and dangerous as a chainsaw. Here are a few things that you must definitely have on you while cutting using a chainsaw:
- Helmet – A hard-hat helmet is a must to protect you from falling debris, branches, and trunks in case a tree has been felled very close to you. It also protects your head from accidental contact with the chainsaw in situations where you may lose control due to kickback.
- Safety goggles – Safety goggles help protect the eye from damage due to splinter and debris kicked up by the chainsaw blade.
- Ear protection – This helps reduce the amount of noise you hear while operating the chainsaw. This is essential to avoid permanent hearing loss in the long run.
- Chainsaw jacket, gloves, and pants (chaps) – These specially designed apparel prevent serious injury or amputation of limbs if you are in an accident involving a chainsaw. The fibers within these clothes entangle with the chain, causing it to stop before it reaches the skin.
2. Have a Safety Kit Nearby
It is crucial to have a first aid kit nearby or in your vehicle when you are operating a chainsaw. Doing so can be life-saving in case of an accident, as chainsaws can cause fatal injuries that require immediate medical attention.
Make sure that the safety kit is equipped with bandages, antiseptic creams and solutions, and painkillers. Sutures and scissors can help tend to cuts and serious injuries caused by the chain, with stitches being needed to help stop the bleeding and potentially saving the person’s life.
It is better to have a colleague with you at some distance away while cutting trees to assist you in case of emergencies. Chainsaws come in two types, based on their handle placement, one with the top to the side for your left hand, and a second handle in the rear with the trigger.
And another one is both handles mounted on top, and these top handle chainsaws are more compact than typical saws so that arborists can use them while up high in trees. For this kind, you need more safety gear to protect yourself.
And if you want to know more about the top handle chainsaws you can head over to this article by Tools Territory website, they have covered all the information about it in detail.
3. Make Sure your Work Environment is Safe
Ensure that you have cordoned the area off with barricades and fences to prevent the public from straying into the area where trees are being felled, which can cause serious injuries or death in extreme cases.
Avoid standing on elevated surfaces or ladders that are not stable on the ground. Any movement while operating this machine can lead to a loss of control or kickback, which can lead to a fall or injury due to contact with the chainsaw.
Make sure you do not cut above your shoulder height to avoid dropping the saw on yourself. Also ensure that you do not have any nest or hives in the tree that can fall down while cutting, which can cause injury to yourself or your colleagues while felling trees.
4. Hold your Chainsaw Correctly
Holding the chainsaw with both your hands is a must at all times. This will ensure that you have proper control over the machine at all times. Do not try overhead cutting as you can easily lose control and drop the chainsaw.
Keep your feet apart and the saw close to your body to ensure maximum stability and control over the saw. This will also prevent you from spinning around too much with the machine, which can put people around you at risk.
Avoid any operations or procedures using a single hand at all costs. An unexpected situation can lead to a dangerous loss of control, which can lead to a very serious accident that puts you and the chainsaw at risk.
5. Ensure your Chainsaw Works Properly
Inspect your chainsaw to confirm it is in proper working condition and spot any issues beforehand. This will ensure it does not have a sudden issue, which can catch you off guard and lead to an accident as a result.
Ensure that the teeth of the blade are sharpened to allow you to cut smoothly and reduce the chance of kickback. Also, ensure that the tension of the chain is set correctly to ensure proper running of the chainsaw.
Periodically top up the lubricating oil to allow the chain to move smoothly. Clean the guide bar and the teeth to prevent wood splinters from entering the internal mechanism and damaging the motor.
Also ensure that the nuts and bolts of the machine are tightened, as these can get loose due to vibrations created while operating and cutting using a chainsaw.
6. Watch for Kickback
Chainsaw kickbacks can happen to the best of the best. Beginners with a lack of experience and composure while using this powerful tool must be cautious to react correctly in such situations
Kickback occurs when the rotating chain meets the wood at an abnormal angle or the pulling chain first comes in contact with the surface of the cut. As a result, the chain is gripped along with the machine and then flung away, resulting in the user losing control over the saw.
You can prevent kickbacks from happening by following these few tips:
- Ensure that the wood does not have nails and other steel parts within. They can lead to a kickback when the blade comes in contact and cause extreme damage to the saw and user.
- Do not cut with the tip of the blade. This will lead to the chainsaw getting kicked back, which could lead to the saw being flung if the user loses complete control. This can lead to injury and other damages.
- Be patient and calm while operating a chainsaw. This will help you identify a potential kickback situation beforehand and take preventive action to avoid damage to the wood or the machine.
At the end of this article, I hope these important safety tips will help you stay safe and allow you to enjoy the experience of operating a chainsaw.