Continued progress in the prevention of nail gun injuries among apprentice carpenters: What will it take to see wider spread injury reductions?

Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Box 3834, Durham, NC 27710, USA.
Journal of safety research (Impact Factor: 1.34). 06/2010; 41(3):241-5. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsr.2010.01.005
Source: PubMed


Nail guns are a common source of acute, and potentially serious, injury in residential construction.
Data on nail gun injuries, hours worked and hours of tool use were collected in 2008 from union apprentice carpenters (n=464) through classroom surveys; this completed four years of serial cross-sectional data collection from apprentices. A predictive model of injury risk was constructed using Poisson regression.
Injury rates declined 55% from baseline measures in 2005 with early training and increased use of tools with sequential actuation. Injury rates declined among users of tools with both actuation systems, but the rates of injury were consistently twice as high among those using tools with contact trip triggers. DISCUSSION AND IMPACT: Nail gun injuries can be reduced markedly through early training and use of tools with sequential actuation. These successful efforts need to be diffused broadly, including to the non-union sector.

Download full-text


Available from: John M Dement, May 28, 2014
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Nail gun use is ubiquitous in wood frame construction. Accessibility and decreasing costs have extended associated occupational hazards to consumers. Compelling evidence documents decreased injury risk among trained users and those with tools with sequential triggers. To prevent inadvertent discharge of nails, this safer trigger requires the nose be depressed before the trigger is pulled to fire. The sequential trigger is not required by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) nor are there any guidelines for training. We collected data from personnel at 217 points of sale/rental of framing nail guns in four areas of the country. Sales personnel had little understanding of risks associated with use of framing nail guns. Individuals who had used the tool and those working in construction outlets were more likely to be knowledgeable; even so, less than half understood differences in trigger/actuation systems. Consumers, including contractors purchasing for workers, cannot count on receiving accurate information from sales personnel regarding risks associated with use of these tools. The attitudes and limited knowledge of some sales personnel regarding these potentially deadly tools likely contributes to a culture accepting of injury. The findings demonstrate how influences on the culture of construction are not limited to workers, employers, or the places construction gets done.
    American Journal of Industrial Medicine 08/2011; 54(8):571-8. DOI:10.1002/ajim.20954 · 1.74 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Occupational injury rates among construction workers are the highest among the major industries. While several injury control strategies have been proposed by various organisations, their effectiveness for reducing the rate of injuries in the construction industry remains uncertain. A systematic search of the literature was conducted on preventing occupational injuries among construction workers. The risk of bias of the studies was assessed and the effectiveness of interventions was evaluated. Thirteen studies were identified. In these studies, there is no evidence that introducing regulation alone is effective in preventing non-fatal and fatal injuries in construction workers. There is no evidence that regionally oriented interventions such as a safety campaign, training, inspections or the introduction of occupational health services are effective in reducing non-fatal injuries in construction workers. There is low-quality evidence that a multifaceted safety campaign and a multifaceted drug-free workplace programme at the company level are effective in reducing non-fatal injuries. Introducing regulation alone is not effective in reducing non-fatal and fatal injuries in construction workers. Additional strategies are needed to increase the compliance of employers and workers to the safety measures that are prescribed by regulation. Continuing company-oriented interventions among management and construction workers, such as a targeted safety campaign or a drug-free workplace programme, seem to have an effect in reducing injuries in the longer term. An evidence base is needed for the vast majority of technical, human factors and organisational interventions that are recommended by standard texts of safety, consultants and safety courses.
    Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 12/2012; 12(12):CD006251. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD006251.pub3 · 6.03 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We evaluated work-related injuries involving a hand or fingers and associated costs among a cohort of 24,830 carpenters between 1989 and 2008. Injury rates and rate ratios were calculated by using Poisson regression to explore higher risk on the basis of age, sex, time in the union, predominant work, and calendar time. Negative binomial regression was used to model dollars paid per claim after adjustment for inflation and discounting. Hand injuries accounted for 21.1% of reported injuries and 9.5% of paid lost time injuries. Older carpenters had proportionately more amputations, fractures, and multiple injuries, but their rates of these more severe injuries were not higher. Costs exceeded $21 million, a cost burden of $0.11 per hour worked. Older carpenters' higher proportion of serious injuries in the absence of higher rates likely reflects age-related reporting differences.
    Journal of occupational and environmental medicine / American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 06/2013; 55(7). DOI:10.1097/JOM.0b013e31828dc969 · 1.63 Impact Factor
Show more