With the rise of home renovation programmes, more and more of us are taking up home renovations ourselves. As rewarding as it is renovating our homes, there are also many risks involved in doing so. Every year, millions of people are injured whilst carrying out renovation projects in their homes. Regardless of whether you’re renovating your whole home or just updating your kitchen or bathroom, it is crucial that you consider your safety when undertaking these renovations. Below we will take a look at some of the most common accident risks that can occur during a home renovation.
Renovations in general
There are many factors to consider when working on renovation projects in your home. If you have an older property, asbestos removal companies will be able to help you remove any unwanted asbestos dangers. For any property with a flat roof, it is vital that you consider roof options for flat roofs and perhaps alternatives to flat roofs as these can be problematic. As opposed to standard flat roofs, the good news is commercial flat roof systems have enhanced durability. Occasionally, companies like to factor in the cost of polycarbonate sheets, as these are a cost-effective method when considering any renovation project.
We will now take a look at specific accident risks when completing a home renovation project.
When undertaking home renovations, it’s highly likely that you will be exposed to different poisonous fumes. These can be found in many everyday materials such as upholstery, adhesives, carpets and paint. If you inhale these poisonous fumes, you can end up with headaches, dizziness and nausea. Worse still, they can trigger allergic reactions including asthma attacks.
Preventing exposure to poisonous fumes
- If you’re working with fumes that you know are poisonous, wear protection and when it comes to cleaning brushes etc, do this outside where the circulation is better.
- When working with substances that emit fumes, make sure the area you are in is well ventilated. One of the best methods of getting rid of these kinds of fumes is to have fresh air.
- Remember that poisonous fumes don’t just affect you, they will also affect others in your home and this includes any family pets.
- Never mix cleaning materials, paints or chemicals.
Power tool accidents
Every year, thousands of accidents occur due to the unsafe use of power tools. As dangerous as power tools can be, it’s almost impossible to undertake any home renovations without using them. The most common risks related to power tools include injuries, lacerations, electrocution and sometimes even amputations. The power tools that can cause serious injury include angle grinders, circular saws, power drills, wood routers and belt sanders. All of these should be used very carefully.
Preventing power tool accidents and injuries:
- Avoid using power tools in areas where it’s cramped or cluttered, as this can make it hard to manoeuvre and you are therefore more prone to a fall or a slip.
- Wear protective eyewear to prevent injury to the eyes.
- If it’s the first time that you’re using a specific power tool, make sure that you have read the instruction manual thoroughly. Be aware of how to correctly operate the tool.
- Never change drill bits or blades whilst a power tool is still on.
- Don’t wear loose clothing when using power tools. The reason for this is because loose clothing can get caught in any moving parts, which can result in an accident or an injury.
Quite often, ladders are needed during home renovations. Ladders are also one of the most common causes of accidents and injuries. The most common injuries that occur from ladders include fractures of the hands, legs, neck, arms and ankles. If metal ladders are used when renovating or updating electrical equipment, there is also a risk of electrocution as well as a fall from height. Working at height means you will need height safety systems in place to ensure safety procedures are in place. Temporary roof protection is also advisable when working on roofs.
Preventing ladder-related accidents and injuries:
- Never balance a ladder on top of a wall or table to get extra height. The feet of a ladder always need to be on solid ground.
- Never climb to the top rung of your ladder.
- Remember to check your ladder for any broken or loose joints before you use it. If you are working with electricity, then use a wooden ladder.
- The ratio that you have to bear in mind to make sure that your ladder is stable is 1:4. So for every 4 feet of height, you need to place your ladder one foot away from the structure.
Electrical shock accidents
An electrical shock accident could be a small surge of electricity to a jolt that can stop your heart. Electrical shocks are common during home renovations and are usually caused when wiring or circuit breakers are being updated.
Preventing electric shock accidents and injuries:
- Only undertake a task if you are certain you can do it confidently and safely. If you have any doubt, then it is best to get in touch with a qualified electrician. It’s simply not worth taking any risks.
- Before you start any work related to electricity, make sure your power is off. If you’re unsure at all, then it is best to turn all the power off in your home, if you don’t know how to turn it off in the area that you are working on.
- Before you use any power tools, make sure you check the cables on them. Even the smallest amount of damage on a cable can cause a shock.
It’s clear to see that many of the most common accidents that take place at home when we are renovating occur with equipment that we commonly use. The key to avoiding accidents and illnesses is to make sure that we have our wits about us and avoid taking any unnecessary risks.