The graph below shows that since April 2018 hand and finger injuries are one of the most common categories of injury to MTA apprentices, comprising over 60% of the injuries sustained.
KEY: LTI = Lost time injuries, MTI = Medical Treatment Injuries,
One of the most significant type of injuries sustained to the hands have been lacerations. A majority of these injuries have been significant with a trip to the medical center resulting in stitches, and a few have been quite traumatic resulting in surgery. During the investigation of these injuries, several root causes have been identified based around taking short cuts, not following procedures, incorrect tool use and not wearing appropriate PPE.
Most hand injuries are preventable and there are a number of safety measures workers and employers can do to prevent hand injuries. Some prevention strategies are;
- Keep eyes on task and hands at all times to ensure your hands are not in the line of fire
- Always wear appropriate PPE when operating machinery being mindful of the fact that gloves can be caught in some machinery & pull the hand into danger
- Ensure long sleeve shirts are buttoned or cuffed securely in place
- Turn off equipment at power source before placing hand in danger
- Use your machine to do the job it was intended for
- Before you use a machine that is guarded, make sure the guard is in place and the machine itself is working well
- Remember, machines are guarded for a very good reason. Never put your fingers or your hands through, under, over, or around the guard