Contractor Safety Share

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Contractor Incurs Laceration and Fracture to the Thumb

Contractor Incurs Laceration and Fracture to the Thumb




Two contractors working from a scissor lift were tearing out ceiling and wall material.  One of the contractors was working with a two pound sledge hammer and a chisel.  While striking the chisel head, the head of the hammer deflected and struck the contractor on the thumb.  He continued to work until he noticed blood on his glove.  The contractor was taken to onsite nurse and then referred to the local Occupational Health Clinic where he was diagnosed with a laceration that required stitches, and a fracture in his thumb.

Factors to consider at your site and/or project include, but not limited to the following:

  • Individuals should always remain aware of their body positions while working with all hand tools.
  • Individuals should maintain situational awareness (where am I in relationship to other workers, pieces of equipment etc.) while conducting all assigned work activities.
  • Safety guards can be attached to chisels and other similar pieces of equipment to prevent contact with an employees hand if a miss-strike occurs.
  • Electric chisels can be used to minimize striking motions. It should be noted that electric tools can introduce other safety factors such as vibration and noise concerns.


Consider this example as you complete today’s work activities.

Safety Flash Action Items:
  • Date Contractor Safety Flash posted for all employees to review: _______________
  • Safety Talk meeting date: _______________
  • Full employee attendance and participation at safety meeting to review this incident (documentation required).
  • Employees understand urgency in protecting themselves and others.
  • Supervisors and Employees are clear which items shared in this Safety Flash are mandatory.
  • Employees/Supervisors will focus on recommended actions during future work activities of a similar nature.
Contract Firm Management Rep Signature____________________


THINK about the hazards associated with your particular work, and the steps that can be taken to increase safety on your job.


If you have questions about this CONTRACTOR SAFETY FLASH, please contact


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