DIY Deck Installation Tips #3 – Prevent Injury on the Job Site

DIY Deck Builing injury
Yikes! Doug, clearly has had issues building a deck.

As you can see, poor Doug has had an accident while cutting his wood decking. Can that guy ever catch a break!? Clearly, great care must always be taken when it comes to building a deck.

“Of course, I knew that already!” is probably the first thought that pops into your head when you read the above sentence.

But, please don’t be like this guy, or Doug:

Man severs thumb in DIY decking accident

It can happen to anyone. The deck tools and accessories you use to build a deck are meant to be treated with respect. So, here are some helpful tips that will give you peace of mind, while also saving a limb, or two:
Building a Deck

  • Power Off – When you’re not standing near your power tools, turn them off, or lock them down. This goes for clumsy adults like Doug, and any children who might be lurking around your job site. Even if you think your kids are locked up watching cartoons in their room, when you step away from your tools, unplug table saw from the wall and lock the trigger on your power drill. You might even go so far as to remove the battery.
  • Nail guns are still guns – The big kid in all of us loves to play with nail guns. Let’s face it. It’s a very cool tool that is also a HUGE time saver. It’s also extremely dangerous. Leaving it anywhere on the floor, or even on a pile of decking is a tragic accident waiting to happen. If you’re not using your nail gun, put it high on a shelf. Even if you have to walk a few extra feet to get to it, just having that peace of mind is worth it.
  • Shut ’em Down – Open tool boxes? Shut em. Drill bits and screws on the ground? Gather em up and put them in a sealed plastic bag, and put it in your tool box.
  • Confucius says “Gathering dust makes for painful fall” – Don’t let the dust that gathers around your saws sit there. Even the most careful adult can slip on it. And if anyone slips while you’re in the middle of cutting a heavy ipe board…I’ll let you imagine how that scenario can play itself out.  After you’re done cutting some boards, sweep up the dust and dispose of it properly.
  • Dust off, Dust on – Covering your eyes and mouth when cutting lumber is a great idea only if you want to prevent dust from getting into your eyes and in your lungs. Are you one of those people who want to not have to worry about coughing up dust and scratching it from your eyes? Good. Using a face mask and goggles is a no-brainer.
  • Keep your Eye on the Ball – Or, in this case, the wood. By losing focus on the wood and table saw, that man in the article put himself in a position that will change his life forever. Why take your or anyone’s life for granted?

Take great care when building a deck and you will gain years of enjoyment out of it….with all your limbs and extremities attached.

Do you have a DIY decking safety tip or story you’d like to share? We’d love to hear it. Use the comment form below to share your decking installation story.

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