Pie Issues Nail Gun Public Safety Statement

Arvada, Colorado (July 18, 2012)– Pie Consulting & Engineering (Pie) today issued a public safety statement to manufacturers and consumers alike about powder-actuated tools, namely nail guns, in an effort to increase awareness about the lack of safety features on these types of tools. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 37,000 people visit the emergency room annually as a result of nail gun related injuries.

nail5-300x200Unintentional tool actuation can cause severe injury and devastation.  Finger and hand mutilation, sometimes requiring amputation, is the primary type of injury resulting from power tools.  Some injuries lead to subrogation against the manufacturer, as insurance companies try to recover expenses paid out as a result of the injury.

“Although many manufacturers strive to protect users by building in safety features, construction equipment accounts for a staggering number of accidents that cause personal injury to workers on construction sites, and to homeowners attempting various home improvements.” – Tyler Schwein E.I.T, Pie Forensic Technician.

Powder-actuated nail guns in particular employ an explosive cartridge and are classified as high velocity guns with discharge speeds exceeding 300 miles-per-hour.  Pie recently conducted forensic investigations into a series of injury cases involving powder-actuated nail guns, which was published in the Spring/Summer, 2012 issue of Subrogator.

What you can do:

  1. Read all warning labels related to the power tool that caution the user of improper handling and potential consequences. Keep all safety documents with tool information, and if the equipment is used rarely, be sure to review the safety information with each use.
  2. Be cautious in developing a false sense of security by taking online courses related to the tool’s operations. Most only provide generic recommendations offered by the manufacturer, but fail to elaborate on specific safety mechanisms of the tool itself.
  3. Never attempt to remove safety switches/guards or install jumper wires to bypass the safety switch.
  4. Immediately report any accidents to a jobsite supervisor.

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