DIY Projects: A Safety Guide

safety_firstAccidents are commonplace in DIY.  Many companies believe that all accidents are avoidable but realistically, are they?  Each year the Department of Occupational Safety report the most common workplace violations and present the facts at the national Safety Council.  So we put together a list of the most common accidents so that you can heed them when undertaking DIY in the home.


In 2011 scaffolding caused a reported 9,093 accidents and workplace violations and the most common reasons for this was due to poor planking which gives out or lacks the support and gives out.  Other accidents were caused by employees slipping on the scaffolding or being struck by falling items.

Fall Protection

A lack of a guardrail or any other sort of protection sadly resulted in almost 7,000 workplace incidents in 2011.  Any time an employee has to work from a certain height precautions need to be taken and there are even regulations stipulating what care needs to be taken.  Regulations state that these need to be taken; in general industry it must be four feet, in maritime it is five and in construction it needs to be six feet.

Hazard Communications

Companies which make or come into contact with chemicals must evaluate the hazards of them.  6,378 accidents were cause because proper safety sheets weren’t correctly used.

Respiratory Defence

Employees who work in environments which are low in oxygen and there is lots if dusts and other vapours which can affect your breathing must be provided with respirators.  People who work in these environments may suffer in the long term from diseases such as cancer and lung problems.  Poor workplace conditions resulted in 3,900 incidents where people required treatment.


Ladders are still one of the most common problems for companies.  It was reported that 3000 people were injured at the hands of ladder violations in 2011.


Working with electric can be very dangerous especially when working with overhead lines, cable harnesses and circuits.  People that work outside with these powerful electric materials are actually harmed less than those who work in offices!  There was only 1,800 accidents compared to that of people in the office (2,556)

Industrial Trucks

Powered Industrial Trucks (PIT’s) cause lots of accidents each year.  There are a number of different accidents that occur using PIT’s where they are driven of loading docks accidentally or lifts falling between docks or even being struck by a truck.  In 2011 there was 2,995 PIT violations in 2011.

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