Perform Last Minute Risk Assessment (LMRA) Before Performing Tasks
An Electrical Contractor was drilling a hole in the ceiling of a Walk-In Cooler using a cordless drill and a ¾” holesaw bit.
The bit grabbed (became stuck). The torque caused the drill to “kick-out” in the opposite direction of the bit, forcing the worker’s hand against the adjacent cooler wall, fracturing a bone in the worker’s hand.
What can we learn from this event?
Perform LMRA and take steps to mitigate the risks
What may seem like a “routine task” can still carry significant risk. Perform a Last Minute Risk Assessment before performing any task and take steps to reduce the risks and mitigate potential negative outcomes.
In this case, the drill could have been angled so that the battery pack was closer to the wall to reduce the amount of kick; the drill could have been set to a lower speed to reduce the velocity of the kick; body position could have been improved – less arm extension/more bend in the elbow to provide more control over the tool.
Had the hole been further from the wall, this type of incident still could have resulted in an injury to the wrist/arm. Drill kick-out has also contributed to abrasions in the past.