Despite their usefulness nail guns can be dangerous when improperly handled. Safety guidelines need to be followed in order to minimise the risk involved with nail gun use.
The hazards presented by nail gun use include accidentally discharging them and nails ricocheting in unintended directions which then can cause injury or property damage, most often when the tool is in “bump mode”.
Occasionally when the nail gun is shot into a hard surface, it can bounce off the surface and shoot in an unpredictable direction, usually when working on hard surfaces such as metal.
Nail guns can be pneumatic or powered by a gas canister. The first type of nail gun is the single shot gun. This nail gun requires finger depression of the trigger for each nail that is fired. The second type is a Bump fire type which requires the trigger to be held down and nail is fired every time the gun’s nozzle comes into contact with an object.
Some basic nail gun tips:
- Workers should be trained on the safe and correct use of a nail gun
- New and inexperienced workers should only operate nail guns under supervision
- All tools, including nail guns should be serviced regularly.
- Manufacturer’s guidelines should be followed
- Rather than the bump fire mode, it is safer to use a single shot type nail gun
- The appropriate PPE, such as eye protection and hearing protection should be worn at all times
- Never point the nail gun at anyone.