We don't want our car restorers, or any of their spectators or helper, ending up in the casualty department of the local hospital so be aware of the hazards involved all the time.
- Use a "safety switch" (also known as a ECLB) protected power point on with all electric power tools and inspection lamps. Modern Houses and Commercial Premises have these devices fitted by law but if you are working in an older facilty buy an extension lead that has one built into the plug.
- Wear safety goggles and protective cloths when grinding, cutting, drilling and blowing out with compressed air. If you have a helper or spectator make sure they are at a safe distance. I have lost count of the number of times I have had grinding spark burns on my arms from wearing only a T shirt. I was a slow learner, I wear overalls now and avoid the pain.
- Watch out for hot objects, cutting grinding and drilling generate a lot of heat and it can stay in adjacent material for some time. When welding wear a welders apron, a face mask, and watch out for UV burning from arc welding. I have seen a welder badly burn his ankles from the UV radiation by not wearing socks for example.
- Be careful of dangerous chemicals. Paint stripper will burn skin quickly and will leave a sore for several days. Some of the materials we need to use are very dangerous to us and the environment. Read all product labels/data sheets and take note of precautions recommended.
- Watch out for the kids, the pets, and nearby objects at all times. Do not damage or set fire to nearby objects. I once set fire to the large palm tree in my backyard cutting a car in half with an angle grinder. Do not shower the Wifes new car or her priceless collection of Orchids in grinding sparks.
- When jacking up a vehicle use a good hydraulic jack, not the useless objects that come with cars. Jack on strong and stable parts of the vehicle. Work only on firm level ground and use jack stands for support. Do not rely on a jack for support, put the vehicle on jack stands and remove the jack before working. Use only blocks of wood as extra spacers when jacking and supporting, do not use bricks or cement blocks, they have a habbit of crumbling under load.
Written by Phil. Storr, last updated 8th September 2000