Bill had been logging for many years so it made sense that his neighbor asked him to help take down the large fir tree in his backyard. Always ready to lend a hand, he grabbed his chainsaw and went over to have a look. On the walk over he started to think about the job ahead. At work they always had a plan based on a good assessment of the hazards, before they started the job. Now he was ready to start cutting this tree without any plan at all.
Bill slowed down and helped his neighbor take a good look at the tree and what had to be done. It was going to be a complex job so they decided that a tree service professional with a bucket truck was needed to do the work safely.
Sometimes when we do work at home or for a friend, we forget or ignore the safety practices and procedures that we always follow while on the job. If you get seriously hurt at work or while at home, the results are the same – lost income and a lengthy rehabilitation.
Think about the challenges that you may run into when taking on jobs at home:
- You may not have the right tools for the job and can be tempted to make do with what you have on hand. Examples include: ladders not tall enough to reach, pushing power tools beyond their limits or missing personal protective equipment.
- The working conditions might be challenging. Instead of working in a shop with the proper lift, you may be jacking up your truck outside in the snow. These poor conditions add to the hazards that must be managed to do the job safely.
- You may not have your co-workers to provide that extra set of hands to do the job right. For example: If you’re a faller and doing some weekend work for a friend, ask yourself if you have qualified assistance? Is there someone who is capable of helping you if something goes wrong?
- The “safety first” attitude may be replaced with a “git-er-done” attitude that can cause us to rush and not take the necessary precautions. Plan all jobs carefully before the work begins.
- Don’t ignore the hazards associated with recreational activities like hunting, taking the ATVs out for a spin or running the boat out to go fishing. Many of the safety procedures and precautions that you use at work can also keep you and your family safe on days off.
- Emergency drills are done at work at least once a year. When was the last time you had a fire drill at home? A good drill will test your smoke detectors and the practice will help family members understand how to escape if there is a fire.
- Home Safety from the Canadian Safety Council
- New safety rules and mandatory registration for off road vehicles in BC