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Emergency officials urge caution when using chainsaws
Special precautions during storm cleanup
From Commonwealth Joint Information Center
FRANKFORT, KY (2012-03-06)) - State and local officials are urging citizens to be extremely cautious if using chainsaws and other power tools when removing storm debris from their property and along with the Kentucky Division of Forestry offer these safety tips:
*Wear the appropriate protective equipment, including hard hat, safety glasses, hearing protection, heavy work gloves, cut-resistant leg wear (chainsaw chaps) that extend from the waist to the top of the foot and boots which cover the ankle.
*Look up before walking beneath trees after a storm. Broken tree limbs may still be lodged in trees, but can easily fall. These are referred to as "widowmakers" for good reason.
*When a tree is uprooted or downed, it creates an unnatural pattern of pressure points and tension. An unknowing chainsaw operator may be in severe danger if attempting to cut a tensioned limb or trunk (called a "springpole") - it may have an extremely violent, catapult-like reaction. Consult a professional.
*Watch for downed utility lines and never try to move them without professional assistance. Phone lines can also carry an electric charge.
*Properly sharpen chainsaw blades and properly lubricate the blade with bar and chain oil. Additionally, the operator should periodically check and adjust the tension of the chainsaw blade to ensure good cutting action.
*Choose the proper size of chainsaw to match the job, and include safety features such as a chain brake, front and rear hand guards, stop switch, chain catcher and a spark arrester.
For media updates, contact the Commonwealth Joint Information Center at 502-607-6901, 502-607-6903, or 502-607-6904.
Additional tornado aftermath safety tips can be found on the Occupational Safety and Administrations web page at http://www.osha.gov/dts/weather/tornado/response.html and disaster specific information can be found on the Kentucky Emergency Management (KYEM) website at www.kyem.ky.gov.
This story was posted on 2012-03-08 03:41:00
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