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  1. #1
    User striker's Avatar
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    Shop safety equipment

    I recently had an eye opening experience that has prompted this post. I'll go more into that experience in a moment. I've gone many years with the standard box of out of date medical supplies (and duct tape) in the shop but I want to upgrade to proper equipment. I live alone and plan to do more work in the shop as I recently retired.
    So I recently had a strange accident if we can call it that. I had a coughing spell off and on for a couple days last month. They got increasingly painful until the last spell tore up my insides pretty well. The whole story is long and convoluted so I'll cut to the chase. After being checked out at the ER, I was sent home. The following weekend I began feeling short of breathe so back to the ER. I was diagnosed with a pneumothorax condition (fluid in the chest) and broken ribs. A hospital stay and a chest tube later I am on the road to recovery. After that experience (actually going to live with broken ribs for a while yet) i have renewed appreciation for being prepared for medical emergencies. To be honest, being short of breathe and knowing my phone is out of reach has been life changing. So Working with saws and sharp implements seems to be foolish without proper equipment. So I wanted to call upon the medical professionals I'm sure we have here to recommend the equipment that makes sense to have on hand.

    I apologize if this has been asked and answered in a previous post. maybe someone can point me to it if thats the case.

    Thanks,

    Stephen Stidd
    STRIKER

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  3. #2
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Sounds like a Life Alert type of device would be a good choice for you. Other than a basic first aid kit, for something more serious it would require the assistance of another.

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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Just getting my shop up and running, so this is a timely post and, even if there is a previous post, it is always good to get us thinking about safety.

    I try to keep my cell in my pocket all the time for quick communication if needed. Hadn't really thought about a first aid kit in the shop. Guess that will be one of my next collections.

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  7. #4
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Stephen, you say you live alone then you definitely need something like "Life Alert" just for the simple fact that you may not be able to get to or use a phone, if the injury is serious enough. Other than a first aid kit; I would suggest a fire extinguisher, Personal Protection Equipment (safety glasses, hearing protection, etc...), an emergency light (that will light the shop enough to see your way to the exit).
    I like making things. I have a wood shop at home. I am a terrible carpenter but I love doing it. Raymond - Charlotte, NC

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  9. #5
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Stephen,
    Check with a provider of alarm monitoring systems for the home, many offer personal devices as well stations around the home. I had a panel installed in my shop which has a EMS call button tied to my home system, I also keep my phone in my pocket just in case.
    Measure twice... cut once... SCREAM LOUDLY... get another board

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  11. #6
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    I have simply safe you install it yourself and pay for monitoring month to month, it comes with a key chain remote that has a panic button. If you press it they will call you if you don't answer they'll call emergency services. I believe it's 14.99 a month for basic monitoring.
    -Ryan

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  13. #7
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    So I recently had a strange accident if we can call it that. I had a coughing spell off and on for a couple days last month. They got increasingly painful until the last spell tore up my insides pretty well. The whole story is long and convoluted so I'll cut to the chase. After being checked out at the ER, I was sent home. The following weekend I began feeling short of breathe so back to the ER. I was diagnosed with a pneumothorax condition (fluid in the chest) and broken ribs.
    Broken ribs don't just happen from severe coughing but they may have contributed to your chest cavity/lung problem (thoracic).

    https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-...s/syc-20350763

    https://my.clevelandclinic.org/healt...gns--treatment

    Here's a handy home/shop first aid kit for minor cuts, scratches, etc.

    https://surviveware.com/products/sur...-first-aid-kit

    Your call on carrying your cell phone around your neck or getting a LifeAlert system.

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  15. #8
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
    Broken ribs don't just happen from severe coughing but they may have contributed to your chest cavity/lung problem (thoracic).
    Broken ribs can and do occur from severe coughing. I’ve treated many and also had the pleasure of breaking 3 ribs and t12 with severe coughing.

    Shop safety equipment (really first aid equipment as safety would comprise all of the preventative measures):
    Think through the steps to get help if needed each shop trip
    Follow manufacture instructions for exposure.

    As to supplies, we surgeons use these supplies to cover virtually all treated wounds and would constitute my “desert island” supplies:
    gauze pads (4x4’s)- hold pressure on fresh wounds 15 min before checking. After bleeding stops, clean out the wound and use a saline moistened 4x4. For smaller wounds - soap and water, antibiotic ointment and bandaid or gauze is fine. Significant active bleeding despite direct pressure is an emergency.
    saline irrigation- sterile for eyes or wounds. A bottle of saline for eye irrigation should cover eye, wound, and digit needs.
    work out your plan for large volume eye irrigation- tub faucet etc- you will likely need a helper
    paper tape (hold in place for a moment for heat to activate tape)- easy on the skin and effective.
    Kerlix gauze rolls. Virtually all extremity wounds are better wrapped than taped. Kerlix can also be moistened and bundled up to cover larger wounds. If you cut Kerlix shorter it can be used as variably sized gauze.
    Ace wrap- very helpful for extremity or forehead wounds. Use on extremities after manual directed pressure to provide hemostasis.
    some people like super glue for wounds available. It works but wounds should be irrigated and clean.
    Amputee fingers- wrap the digit saline soaked gauze and place in bag, surround that with a bag containing and ice. Goal is cool not freeze.
    Direct pressure for ooze or bleeding is very effective at stopping most bleeding but must be held constantly for blocks of time. Resist the urge to peek every 30 seconds. People taking blood thinners often require longer pressure holds for a given wound.
    Ongoing wound care is a whole separate topic.
    (Of course, seek medical advice, ER, 911 as indicated. This is general advice meant to aid stocking of first aid supplies not guide unique injury care.)

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  17. #9
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Redknife is on the money. I was an EMT with the Charlotte Fire Dept. for 5 years. I keep all those things in my shop 1st. aid supply box. I also added peroxide, alcohol wipes and tons of bandaids. Especially the larger wide type. They are a stop gap before the 4 X 4 gauze pads.

    Pop

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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    First, thank you for the supplies list. I do have a couple of questions. For a shop, what type of container would you suggest to store the supplies taking into account the possible extremes of heat and cold and the need for a solo woodworker to easily get to them? And, how often would you replace those supplies?

    Thanks.

  19. #11
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Thanks to Chris and Pop Golden for their input and corrections.

    I thought that redknife was a surgeon so it's even better that he's chimed in for expert guidance.

  20. #12
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Everyone mentions life alert that charges a monthly fee. This technology is quickly becoming obsolete with the advent of the Google home and other related devises. Why pay a monthly fee when you can use google home and indicate to call 911? I am not sure if they have added this feature at this point but I am sure it is on its way. If you have a cell phone in your pocket with location services turned on, the emergency services would know exactly where you are located instead of having to look around the home for you.

    Currently do not own one of these devices and do not necessarily advocate them as I find it creepy to have a device listening to activities in my home. However, I am interested how they plan to make these devices useful. This is one approach. If we take a look at cell phones, they make calls, texts, face messaging, navigation anywhere on the planet, Internet almost anywhere you go, and have a camera. There really have been no hardware enhancements that remove other technologies from common use. The more recent advances are waterproofing, ruggedness from dropping, size, biometrics, battery life and software updates. Otherwise the new cell phones are no different that 10 years ago and stock prices for the companies are showing it.

    These home devices are in their infancy but they are currently toys with no real purpose. This may be a purpose that wipes out services like life alert. I know it is strange but these are things I often ponder. What is next and what markets can these take over.

    for those of you that currently own these gizmo,s can you use it to make a cell call? This ma be a good solution. The only limitation I the shop would be if you can be heard over running power equipment.

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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Steve, we all hope you have a safe and speedy recovery -- I've lived alone for 7-1/2 years since my wife passed away and have always had a well-equipped first aid kit in my shop, but my most important safety device is my cell phone always in my pocket in the event of emergency. I had a nasty scrape cut on my shin a few years back caused by stepping over a stack of lumber and big gauze pads and an Ace bandage kept me from bleeding to death before I made it to the ER (several stitches). As the Boy Scout motto exclaims, "Be Prepared"!
    Every day brings a new adventure -- it is great to be retired!

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  23. #14
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    I was a firefighter/paramedic in a former life. Even with my knowledge and skills, if an accident happened to me, I might not think clearly about what I need to do. With that in mind, I always have the cell phone in my pocket, fire extinguishers mounted by the shop doors, and a large first aid kit with easy reach. That being said, if you have or are going to buy a first aid kit, open it up and become thoroughly familiar with what is there.
    This is a great topic, and I thank everyone for their valuable input.
    Experience is a hard teacher; she gives the test first, and the lesson later.

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  25. #15
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    Re: Shop safety equipment

    Quote Originally Posted by nn4jw View Post
    First, thank you for the supplies list. I do have a couple of questions. For a shop, what type of container would you suggest to store the supplies taking into account the possible extremes of heat and cold and the need for a solo woodworker to easily get to them? And, how often would you replace those supplies?

    Thanks.
    All of these things have an expiration date. So, in the hospital, someone has to periodically check for outdated stock, remove and replace. In my opinion, this attention to expiration dates is overkill for a home shop first aid kit. Dry goods (gauze etc) should last indefinitely. I wouldn’t use expired sterile gauze in the OR but I have no reservation about using old packaged gauze for personal external use. I’d watch the expiration date on saline eye irritant, though. As far as temperature, you’d have to judge liquids based on your temperature range. The cheap Borg zippered tool bags would be a good size to keep the supplies mentioned if you don’t have a separate spot.

    Also: consider adding “ABD’s”- abdominal battle wound dressings to the list. Kind of like a big sanitary pad to cover bigger areas. These things are all available on Amazon.

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