I know that a lot of people gain great satisfaction from carrying out home improvements and general DIY jobs.
However, there are inherent dangers for the amateur and if things go wrong you could become one of the estimated 222,000 DIYers who end up in hospital each year. That statistic is provided by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RSoPA) and they should know!
So what are the most common dangers encountered by an intrepid DIY fan and how might they get injured? Here are the most likely causes of accidents:
• Knives – you should always take care when using sharp implements and this is especially the case when utilising knives or scalpels for tasks such as cutting carpet or lino. It really pays to have a professional carpet fitter ensure the flooring is properly measured and fitted. Avoid blood on the pile!
• Saws – once again care is needed as saws are sharp. However, that is not the only thing to watch out for. Many people undertake sawing tasks on surfaces that are unsuitable or do not secure the material they are cutting properly. If you don’t want to invest in a workbench, invest in a professional carpenter or joiner.
• Screwdrivers – “it’s only a screwdriver so what could possibly go wrong?” You’ll find out as just a quick slip can have you sitting in A&E for an age.
• Paving slabs – moving any heavy items such as paving slabs or breeze blocks needs to be done carefully. Toes and fingers are especially vulnerable, not to mention the strain on your back. Driveway pavers and landscapers are the experts used to handling these sorts of materials.
• Paint tins – come on, it’s just a tin of white emulsion. Surely nobody ever got hurt by it? Wrong! A common accident is having paint drip into your eyes when painting a ceiling and there is also the constant risk of spillage. A professional painter and decorator will understand the techniques and materials required to get the best finish for you, without risk of damage to person or property.
The overall message, then, is employ a professional tradesman for an excellent job and to keep you safely out of the hospital.