Building Stairs Safely

By Greg Vanden Berge

In the years I have spent building stairs and watching other people build stairs, I thought it was about time to talk about a little stair building safety.

A lot of people jump in without any thought and you start building something. Most of the time I noticed these people get in a hurry and if they're not careful, while there running around like a chicken with their head cut off, they could get hurt.

If you ask most of the people how they hurt themselves on a construction site, they would tell you, that it was because of their careless working habits. Most of these people were in a hurry, trying to get things done so they could go home early or start working on the next phase of the project sooner.

Some people are always in a hurry, trying to get something done. These are the people that seem to be what I would like to call "Accident Magnets". There always getting hurt if it's not on the job it's at home or while they're on vacation. You probably know someone like this.

I'm writing this article on stair building safety, to get construction workers and homeowners to slow down a little bit, take some time to properly adjust your ladder or set the board you are about to cut in a safe position, before cutting the wood.

I cut my thumb off of my left hand when I was 16 years old. I was in a hurry. I have worked most of my life in a hurry, as a piece worker. I got paid for each set of stairs I did, and the more stairs I could build, the more money I made. Talk about being in a hurry.

The doctor fixed my thumb but I will never be able to bend it again. I don't live in pain but I do live with the idea that I could have put the 2 x 4 in a different position to make the cut safely.

All I'm asking is to give your projects a little more thought about how you can construct them safely. I've had a lot of close calls, while working in the construction business and it's simply not worth it, to live a life of pain and agony because of an accident that, most of the time you could have prevented.

I'm not going to make this article real long, I want to make a point, the point is simply, take your time, don't be in a hurry, spend a little more time planning your project and think safety.

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