This guide will help teach you safety guidelines when using a chainsaw; however, it is not to be used as a substitute for chainsaw safety training. Consult your user's manual and follow all safety precautions and manufacturer's instructions to help keep you safe.
Rules to Follow
* Keep both hands on the chainsaw to help you maintain control.
* Wear protective clothing, including steel toe boots, a hardhat, safety glasses and hearing protection. In addition to this, choose chainsaw safety chaps or trousers and a pair of snug work gloves to keep you safe.
* Be aware of the kickback zone. See this image to learn about your chainsaw's kickback zone and never cut in this location. Additionally, never let the kickback zone come into contact while the chain is moving.
* Check the tension on the chain and tighten before starting. The chain may loosen during usage. If the chain comes off during usage, it can cause serious damage. Check a new chain after using for 20 minutes as they can stretch quickly in the beginning. Older chains should be checked after each hour of usage to ensure it is snug. Check out this post on Chainsawgeek.com - this is a good guide from checking
* Use the chain brake when you are not cutting.
* Hold the chainsaw in your left hand if you are moving the chainsaw for a short distance. This will help to avoid accelerating the blade accidentally. If you are walking more than 10 feet, turn off the chainsaw engine.
* Do not make a cut until you have thoroughly considered all events. For example, if you are cutting a tree, consider the many directions the tree could fall and the outcomes that can happen.
* Only add fuel 10 feet or more away from where you will be starting your chainsaw's engine.
* Ensure that all safety features are working and the chain is sharp before using a chainsaw.
* Always make sure someone is around while you are using a chainsaw.
* Never operate a chainsaw if you are tired or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
* Do not use a chainsaw above shoulder height or while standing on a ladder.
* Avoid using during strong winds.
Safety Tips for Chainsaw Usage
* Grip - Make sure that your fingers and thumb is wrapped around the handle to prevent a serious accident should a kickback occur. Always grip the handle firmly.
* Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and position the chainsaw on one side. Never stand directly behind the chainsaw. Finally, never squat down or overreach when you are using a chainsaw.
* Practice - If you are a beginner, take the time to learn how to balance and use the chainsaw by cutting small dry branches before completing more difficult tasks.
* Materials - Never allow the chainsaw to come in contact with non-wood materials or with the ground. Make sure that all nails, screws and wire is removed from the wood prior to cutting.
* Outdoor Extension Cords- If you are using an electric chainsaw, make sure that the extension cord is for outdoor usage. Always know where the cord is to avoid cutting through it or tripping over it. Finally, never stand in a wet area.