GARDEN SHED AND WORKSHOP SAFETY
February 3, 2022
If there’s one thing many people like to do, it’s to work outside in a garden or in a basement or garage workshop. For those people, working with your hands or getting your hands into the dirt can be relaxing and stress relieving, spending hours outdoors or in a shop alone, either quietly or maybe with their favorite music or radio station playing in the background.
But how can one be prepared at the time of an accident while outside in a back garden shed or in a basement or garage workshop? James Dulley, a writer for The Epoch Times newspaper answered a readers’ question about assembling a First-Aid kit for DIYers in the January 28 to Feb. 3, 2022, issue. One of the ideas he puts forward is actually a really good idea; “For the greatest safety, install a large alarm bell on the outside of the toolshed (or garage or workshop). Wire it to a switch with a long rope all the way to the floor. Tie loops along the length of the rope so it is easy to pull even with injured hands or your teeth if you have to. The bell should be loud enough so your neighbors can also hear it. Make sure they know what it means.”
Of course, after the alarm bell idea, one of the most important items a workshop or garden shed should have is a First Aid kit. Below are the items you’ll want to include:
- Gauze – various widths
- Tape – various widths (In the past I’ve repaired cuts using folded paper towel held on with duct tape, masking tape and even duct tape (“Any port in a storm and some storms are worse than others.” I always say), but the medical kinds of tape and gauze are best and the most sanitary.
- Bandages – various sizes recommended
- Antibiotic ointment
- A blanket
- Non-latex gloves
- Hydrocortisone cream (note: You should not use hydrocortisone if you are allergic to hydrocortisone, corticosteroids, or if you have a systemic fungal infection. Ask your doctor about hydrocortisone products and they’ll advise you based on your health history)
- Tweezers – a good idea to get at those small splinters. Depending on the size of the splinter, a pair of needle-nosed pliers can work too. If the splinter is really large, it may be time to get to a hospital.
- Instant cold compress
- A bottle of water
- Please note that many of the items listed above may have to be applied by another person if they’re available
And of course, every workshop should have a fire extinguisher. A power-saw blade hitting hidden metal in wood like a nail can cause sparks and if there’s dry sawdust around, well you never know. As Dante (while some have attributed it to Confucius) said: “The smallest spark can cause the largest fire.” This proverb can apply in oh so many areas of life, but I digress.
While a fire extinguisher is probably not necessary in a garden shed, it’s probably a good idea to have one if you’re a smoker or you have occasional visitors who do. It may also depend on what you’re growing. No judgement here.
Finally, perhaps the most important item to have access to is a phone or cell phone, whether you’re alone or not, but especially if alone. While many home-attached garages may still have a phone, with many people disconnecting from Ma Bell these days, there’s a good chance that your garage and probably an in-the-back garden shed don’t.
And depending on where you live, most areas in the U.S.A. and Canada today, have cell service. In those areas that don’t have cell service currently, service is being expanded across North America on a daily basis.
Having access to a cell phone when in an emergency is a game-changer. And that’s where having the Here I Am App on your cell phone comes in. With the Here I Am App on your phone, you can send an emergency message to up to three friends or family members at the push of a button.
And one of the greatest things about the Here I Am App is that it supplies the people you’ve reached out to for help with your exact GPS position. The GPS coordinates should get your rescuers within a few yards or meters of your location.
As with all emergencies, timing is critical. Life-threatening injuries can occur quite quickly in a workshop, with the Here I Am App on your phone, help is just a click away. To discover more about the Here I Am app, visit: www.hereiamapp.com
Here I Am App is available for purchase on Google Play and the Apple App Store for USD$1.99.
Paul Taalman is the creator of the Here I Am app.