Staff Member Requires Surgery to Hand After Cutting Zip Ties with Pocket Knife
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Type:  Lessons Learned

Publisher:  Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA

Date: 

Topics:  Occupational Safety and Health

A staff member cut his palm and thumb while using a personal pocket knife to remove zip ties. After visiting the on-site medical provider, he was referred to the emergency room, where he received multiple stitches. A subsequent evaluation by an orthopedic surgeon diagnosed nerve damage that required surgical repair. Lessons Learned: Knives are involved in more disabling injuries in the U.S. each year than any other type of hand tool (Journal of Emergency Medicine, 2013). Use the correct, and safest, tool for the job. If you don't have the right tool, notify your supervisor and one will be provided. When using sharp instruments, consider wearing appropriate PPE, which may not prevent an injury, but may lessen its severity.

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