New guidance document helps construction employers and workers prevent
nail gun injuries
WASHINGTON - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Institute for
Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) have developed new guidance,
Nail Gun Safety - A Guide
for Construction Contractors (PDF document, download
Adobe Acrobat for free), to help construction employers and workers prevent work-related nail gun
"Nail gun injuries are responsible for approximately 37,000 emergency room visits annually. In some
cases, workers have died from their injuries," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety
and Health Dr. David Michaels. "This document will help construction employers make necessary changes to
improve nail gun safety and protect their workers from preventable injuries and death."
"NIOSH is pleased to partner with OSHA in presenting effective, evidence-based guidance for safer
nail gun use," said NIOSH Director John Howard, M.D.
Construction workers, particularly those in residential construction, use nail guns nearly every day.
Although this tool is easy to operate and increases productivity, there have been reports of internal and
external bodily injuries. These injuries occur as a result of unintended nail discharge; nails that bounce
off a hard surface or miss the work piece and become airborne; and disabling the gun's safety features,
among other causes. Injury prevention is possible if contractors take steps such as using full sequential
trigger nail guns; establishing nail gun work procedures; and providing workers with personal protective
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and
healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working
men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For
more information, visit the OSHA
website. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH0 is the federal agency that
conducts research and makes recommendations for preventing work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths.
More information can be found at NIOSH website.
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