DIY Accidents Are Costly Catastrophes!

Every week 85 Brits injure themselves with lawnmowers.

DIY handymen are costing the NHS thousands of pounds by putting up unsteady scaffolds, touching live wires and shooting themselves in the feet and hands with nail guns . . . amongst other things. Our traditional weekend pass time is fast turning the home into the most dangerous place to be. In 2000, there were 99,000 serious DIY-related accidents compared to 85,000 in 1996.  Who knows what that number has risen to by now, as more reason statistics have yet to be recorded.

Middle aged handymen often only have just enough tools to get themselves into trouble, but not enough tools to get themselves out of it.  My advice would be to make sure you have the right equipment for any job you are going to undertake.  You only have to fall the wrong way to have a life-changing accident.

It’s estimated that an average of 11 people die each week from accidents in their homes.  That makes an annual total of 573 which is higher than the amount of accidents on the road at 366!

Accidents in the garden make up 17 percent of all DIY related injuries, making it the most dangerous household area.  Even the insects are getting involved, inflicting around 25,000 injuries per year.  Plants are responsible for around 400 injuries per week.

DIY Accidents Are Costly Catastrophes!

The kitchen has been found to be the most dangerous room inside of the house in most parts of the country.

I think it’s time we had a fresh new campaign that focuses on safety around the home.  Let’s target home handymen – among others.  In this country we have a Road Safety Week, a Child Safety Week, a Gas Safety Week, a Family Safety Week . . . but there’s no DIY Safety Week!

People falling off unstable ladders is a common injury around the home.  Your wife asks you to prune a branch so you lean the ladder against the tree. Often it’s a case of putting the ladder on the wrong side of the cut and the whole thing goes over.  Or imagine you’re screwing something on a wall above your head with both hands and you lose balance. There’s no time to put your hand out to steady yourself.

Other examples of DIY disasters include people hitting power cables when stapling insulation under their homes and electrocuting themselves, people falling through ceilings because they aren’t aware of which part is safe to walk on and people being crushed while working under cars in their garages because the jack hasn’t been properly secured.

A friend of mine is a doctor in the Accident and Emergency Department and she says that the most common household injury she sees is people chopping their own fingers off while cooking. Burns were also another common injury from the kitchen.  Then there is carelessness when using pesticides from the garden shed.  She’d often seen people poisoned by accidently inhaling the fumes.

People just don’t seem to be getting the message when it comes to safety in the home so perhaps it’s time that action is taken.  When you look for first aid courses, you can find plenty of First Aid at Work Safety courses, but very little that is specifically related to the home.  As accidents in the home seem to be overtaking accidents at work when it comes to statistics, perhaps it’s time a more specific course was developed and offered . . . and perhaps it’d be an idea for us all to attend!  That way at least, if accidents are going to happen, we’ll know how to deal with them.