Fencing Safety Hazards
Keep dangers fenced in and yourself safe. Photo Credit: james.thompson
You may not think of fence building as much of a dangerous project and, as construction projects go, it may not be. Much talk goes to fencing types and ordinances, but you should always respect any project for its potential to harm and there are several safety hazards to which valuable attention must be paid.
- Post Hole Digging is the most prevalent possibility for danger. Whether using handheld post hole diggers or power augers, you’ll want to keep a close focus on the task at hand.
- Watch Your Step. The act of digging post holes is dangerous enough, but even after the tools are laid down there will be several gaping holes in the ground that sit as reminders to stay alert at all times—it’s best for you and your ankles if you can avoid such prompts.
- Over the Edge. While most fences are built to create enclosures or provide privacy, some are built as safety tools themselves, such as on slopes or at the edge of drop-offs. So obviously you’ll want to take extra care during fence building.
- Power Tools. Even hand tools can be hazardous (thumbnails past will attest to that) and power tools even more so. In fencing, augers, circular saws, reciprocating saws, and nail guns are commonly used power tools that should not be handled without at least reading and understanding how to use them.
- Wire/Electric Fences. Wire, barbed wire, even field fencing can be hazardous to the life-sustaining enclosure that is our skin. Wearing gloves is rule number one when doing any construction work, but especially when working with metal or wire. Electric fencing comes with its own self-explanatory dangers. While invisible pet fences are in no way lethal, other higher voltage fencing should never be handled by anyone but a professional.
- Animalia. One last thing, especially for rural fence builders, it is best to be aware of some of the living hazards around. Wasps, snakes, dinosaurs, etc. Mostly such creatures are merely a nuisance at worst, but for homeowners with allergens to bees they are worth noting. The odds are that you are well aware of your local creatures, just be a little extra aware when you are digging holes in their habitat.
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