An angle grinder is a power tool that is used by construction workers and contractors. It is a type of abrasive wheel and offers a fast and effective way to cut and smooth a variety of surfaces and materials. But like any other power tool, grinders can be dangerous if used incorrectly or carelessly. In this blog, we will know about safety precautions to be taken before and during cutting and how to cut properly.
Let’s see the possible injuries by grinders:
- Cuts on the skin
- Amputation of fingers
- Eye injuries
- Head injuries
- Foot injuries
- Other impact injuries
Many of these injuries can be caused by flying abrasive and metallic particles, ejected materials, and from contact with the tool itself.
You may encounter a number of accidents while working with angle grinders:
The risk of breakage is very high in every abrasive wheel. This risk can be decreased by checking discs, correctly mounting, and safely using angle grinders.
Make sure that you only use a disc in good condition, within its expiry date, and speed limitations. Never exceed the maximum speed and expiry date marked on the wheel.
Mount abrasive wheels correctly, and use on the tool that they are intended for. Many accidents occur because wheels are mounted in different ways.
Contact With Wheel
Angle grinders can cut through stone, concrete, metal and other strong materials, so while working with it you have to be extra careful as it can easily cut through human flesh and bones. Hence, it can have serious consequences and the chances of injuries increase with improper use of a grinder and when there are no safety precautions during its use. So, make sure the safety guard is in place and workers wear suitable gloves to keep a good grip during use. Also, be alert while using an angle grinder.
This can cause serious and even fatal accidents. Kickback mostly happens when the angle grinder grabs any material and jams while cutting, or if you are using a wrong wheel or cutting at the wrong speed.
Contact with Projectiles
Projectiles happen due to wheel bursting and also by the material being cut. You cannot always prevent projectiles, but you can minimize the risk by using the right tool. To stop injury, it is important to wear the correct PPE.
Choosing the right wheel for the material and setting the correct speed while cutting is also very important. Make sure you are trained in mounting wheels and change your wheels when they become worn.
Kickbacks can also happen due to loss of control on the tool, and it can cause serious injuries. Always wear PPE including eye, head, foot, and hand protection.
If you want to be safe and be away from serious injuries, it is important to wear the right clothing. If you wear the wrong clothing, the risk of entanglement is very high.
Loose clothing such as ties or baggy long sleeves is easily drawn in between the wheel and the workpiece. Long hair should be tied back. Rags and waste should be removed from the work area as they may also entangle.
While using an angle grinder it produces a large number of sparks which is not possible to stop, but you can ensure your safety while working with it.
If you are using an angle grinder near a refueling station or close to any flammable substance, they may catch fire from the sparks.
You should always check the work area before using an angle grinder and remove any combustible or flammable material.
Most of the angle grinders are electric and it is important to consider accidents caused by portable electrical equipment. Always check the tool before use, have periodic portable appliance testing, and keep cables away from the wheel to avoid contact.
Apart from these risks, it is important to look at other factors and possible injury-related actions as well. These risks may not cause accidents but can cause long-term damage to your health.
Always check the grinder’s vibration exposure levels. You should also be aware of dust exposure, especially from silica, wood and other harmful dust. Always wear a dust mask to protect your lungs.
Simply following these tips can help you keep yourself safe from the risks associated with angle grinders.
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