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What’s the worst injury you’ve ever had while doing a DIY project?

5/13/2009 2:11:08 PM

Tags: safety, power tools, question to readers

Do-it-yourself projects have so many benefits. Many people enjoy woodworking, plumbing or metal working as a hobby. You can save money by doing things yourself, too. And you have the satisfaction of doing something for yourself and knowing it’s been done right (or at least you know how it was done, even if it’s not quite “right”).

But there are some risks. Slivers, minor cuts, bruises and sore backs are to be expected. Other accidents are more serious: cuts from a circular saw, burns while welding or electrocution during a wiring project.

What’s the worst injury you’ve experienced while doing a DIY project?



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Letha Dearborn_4
6/11/2009 3:53:00 PM
The worst injury I had was when I was a carpenter and we built custom stairways. Well anyway I was cutting out a hand rail fitting blank on a ban saw. The blade was dull but we needed the blank cut and shaped asap so I was forcing it. Having to really lean on the block of laminated oak, the blade caught a heavy grain pattern and well...I pushed my little finger right through the blade. Luckily I realize what was going on quick enough and I didn't panic so I slowly pulled my finger out of the blade, turned off the saw and went to the bathroom. My brother in law noticed the trail of blood, followed it and saw me, his little baby sister in law leaned over the sink with my head down bleeding into the sink. It got stitched up and is now fine until my hands get cold and then I bump it, ouch!

Glen Graham
6/3/2009 1:04:20 PM
My own worst injury was when cutting down a tree for a friend. It was very near his house so I had to fell it bit by bit from the top. The ladder slipped out fromm under me and although I was only about 10 feet above the ground, I was holding a chainsaw, and when the ladder fell and I hit the ground I went over with my foot still trapped in the ladder and with the weight of the saw pulling me over , tore all the ligaments in my foot and ankle. I was on crutches for a couple of weeks. A year on and I still get pain. Worst part is it was my own fault for not securing the ladder! Funniest mistake I've seen was a professional carpenter at work. He had a screw held between his fingers, got an itch on his head and went to scratch it - sticking the screw in his eye!! - He wasn't badly hurt though, so it's OK to laugh!

Glen Graham
6/3/2009 1:04:09 PM
My own worst injury was when cutting down a tree for a friend. It was very near his house so I had to fell it bit by bit from the top. The ladder slipped out fromm under me and although I was only about 10 feet above the ground, I was holding a chainsaw, and when the ladder fell and I hit the ground I went over with my foot still trapped in the ladder and with the weight of the saw pulling me over , tore all the ligaments in my foot and ankle. I was on crutches for a couple of weeks. A year on and I still get pain. Worst part is it was my own fault for not securing the ladder! Funniest mistake I've seen was a professional carpenter at work. He had a screw held between his fingers, got an itch on his head and went to scratch it - sticking the screw in his eye!! - He wasn't badly hurt though, so it's OK to laugh!

Glen Graham
6/3/2009 12:42:16 PM
My own worst injury was when cutting down a tree for a friend. It was very near his house so I had to fell it bit by bit from the top. The ladder slipped out fromm under me and although I was only about 10 feet above the ground, I was holding a chainsaw, and when the ladder fell and I hit the ground I went over with my foot still trapped in the ladder and with the weight of the saw pulling me over , tore all the ligaments in my foot and ankle. I was on crutches for a couple of weeks. A year on and I still get pain. Worst part is it was my own fault for not securing the ladder! Funniest mistake I've seen was a professional carpenter at work. He had a screw held between his fingers, got an itch on his head and went to scratch it - sticking the screw in his eye!! - He wasn't badly hurt though, so it's OK to laugh!

Dave_51
5/27/2009 7:15:57 PM
I must be the luckiest guy alive - knock on wood - or else a woodworking hobby is relatively safe. The worst thing I ever did to myself in 50-odd years was to slip off a drywall screw head and put the bit through my thumbnail. I think the mildness is remarkable. I've gotten hurt much worse in cycling accidents, swimming mishaps, skiing wrecks, and so on, not to mention repetitive stress injury at work and car accidents to and from work. In comparison, my woodworking/handyman hobby is the safest thing I do.

Dave_51
5/27/2009 7:14:02 PM
I must be the luckiest guy alive - knock on wood - or else a woodworking hobby is relatively safe. The worst thing I ever did to myself in 50-odd years was to slip off a drywall screw head and put the bit through my thumbnail. I think the mildness is remarkable. I've gotten hurt much worse in cycling accidents, swimming mishaps, skiing wrecks, and so on, not to mention repetitive stress injury at work and car accidents to and from work. In comparison, my woodworking/handyman hobby is the safest thing I do.

The Brays
5/23/2009 12:30:29 PM
I was pulling up carpet in our home and exposing the maple hardwood floors underneath. The carpet tack strips along the walls were not only nailed down but stapled down with 2.5" staples. One of these staples was rather stubborn. I placed a screwdriver under the staple, stood up and put my weight on the screwdriver - turning my head and cringing. The staple popped free and I looked back just as the staple flew at my eye. My eyelid caught the staple before it could do more damage but it got enough to pierce my cornea and my internal lense in my eye causing an immediate severe cataract (im 27 so this was an anomaly in the ER). They had to do emergency surgery to remove the lense and stitch -ugh- my eyeball. 10 months later I am going to go in to have an artificial lens put in. They couldn't put in behind the iris -colored part- so they will have to put it in front -very rare. Wish me luck and remember WEAR EYE PROTECTION even for the simplist of things!

Pat Miketinac
5/14/2009 9:34:34 PM
I had just cut a 1x14 board from a log on my Belsaw sawmill when I noticed a warp uncommon with fresh green lumber. This caused the board to fall back into the saw when the carriage returned, instead of onto the roller deck. The saw cut a corner off and threw it in my chest, knocking me out. I awoke to the sound of the still running tractor, very bruised and sore but nothing broken. I now use that same plank as a shield when I saw! I finally completed all the posts & beams, rafters, and planks for my earth shelter without further incident, and later cut all the wood for my garage workshop. that happened in '86, I think. I should not have allowed the carriage to return until the board was clear of the saw.







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