Power Tool Safety

 

Policy Statement

Departments that utilize hand and power tools are responsible for implementing a safety-training program that includes shop regulations, tool inventories, required training, and regular power tool inspection and maintenance.  All users of power tools must complete applicable training and follow the safety requirements of this policy.

Reason for Policy 

Due to the increased force characteristic of hand and power tools, there is a greater potential for injury.  The purpose of this policy is to prevent injury and damage caused by power tools, and also to comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations (29 CFR 1910 Subparts P; 29 CFR 1926 Subpart I). 

Who is Governed by this Policy

  • Students
  • Staff
  • Faculty

Policy

Departmental Safety Requirements 

Persons in charge of hand and power tools in their departmental shops must implement a safety-training program that includes shop regulations, training, inventory worksheets, and inspection and maintenance procedures.  Shop regulations must include the hours that the shop may be used, the persons permitted to use equipment, the supervision required, any recommended personal protective equipment, and any other pertinent information.  A copy of the shop regulations must be posted in the shop.  All shops must remain locked when not in use, and students are not permitted to be in any shop outside posted hours of operation.   Shop Supervisors should contact Health & Emergency Management Services for assistance in developing a departmental safety-training program. 

Required Training and Supervision 

Prior to entering a shop all employees must receive instruction on shop regulations from the person in charge of hand and power tools for that shop, and must attend annual OSHA refresher training provided by Health & Emergency Management Services.  Additionally, prior to entering a shop all students must receive instructions on shop regulations and power tool safety from the person in charge of hand and power tools for that shop, and must attend a university-approved safety training course on the use of power tools.   

Prior to using power tools, employees and students must be trained to use the correct tools for each job, and must attend training specific to each tool to be used. For employees, this training is provided by Health & Emergency Management Services.  For students, this training is provided by the applicable professor/instructor with the assistance of Health & Emergency Management Services.  No one is permitted to use any power tools without receiving proper training.     

Students are not permitted to use any power tools without the presence of the applicable professor/instructor. Students working with power tools also must work in pairs, and may not wear headphones/earphones while present in shops or operating power tools. 

Inspection and Maintenance 

Only tools provided by the university may be used in shops.  Use of personal tools in university shops is prohibited. 

Persons in charge of hand and power tools in their departmental shops are responsible for inspection and maintenance of all power tools used at regular intervals in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications.  The operation manual for each tool present in a shop must be made available to employees and students in that shop.  Before using a tool, the operator must inspect it to verify that all moving parts are operational and clean. 

Contractors working with power tools are responsible for all aspects of power tool safety with respect to their employees, including but not limited to appropriate training, supervision, personal protective equipment, inspection and maintenance.  

Related Information

Power Tool Program 

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.242, Hand and Portable Powered Tools and Equipment 

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.243, Guarding of Portable Powered Tools 

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.244, Other Portable Tools and Equipment 

Contacts

Contact Phone Number Email Address
Health & Emergency Management Services 202-994-4347  [email protected]

Responsible University Official: Senior Associate Vice President for Safety and Security
Responsible Office: Division of Safety and Security

Last Reviewed: March 16, 2017

 

Non-compliance with this policy can be reported through this website.