The Dangers of DIY

Due to the current situation with many of us being isolated at home, the amount of DIY home improvement has grown exponentially.  Couple with this rate of DIY related injuries, has also increased proportionately.  This being the case what can you do to prevent a visit to Emergency.

Planning is an excellent way to start, to make sure you have the correct equipment and materials needs.  Along with the right protective gear and the necessary skill to perform the task.  For example using toxic chemicals without protective equipment and skills can lead to serious and long-lasting consequences.

Most of us feel able to tackle a bit of painting at home but even performing a relatively simple DIY of repainting your house.  It could involve exposure to lead-based paints and will certainly involve cleaning and prepping the surfaces, reading to take the new paint.  I have seen many eye injuries result from cleaning going wrong.  An example of a memorable case, involved a lady who had shot herself in the eye with exit mold.  Many of the mold removing agents contain ammonia which is an alkaline chemical that hits the surface of your eye and stops hurting fairly quickly, but keeps burning through the layers of the cornea.  This type of eye injury actually requires a visit to the hospital as the patient will need a saline bag held open over the eye to continuously flush the chemical from the eye, in an effort to stop the destructive action.

When something as innocuous as cleaning can lead to a serious injury, you need to be very aware of the types of situations that you and your family are being exposed to with your home handy experiences.  Otherwise it will be an episode of when DIY goes wrong.  This ultimately involves a visit to the ER, which is certainly best avoided in normal circumstances, let alone at the moment.

I understand that DIY can seem much more attractive when you are bored.  There are so many of us climbing the wall figuratively at home, so something to do is the perfect distraction.  I am not discounting that DIY when you are bored is a useful distraction, but I would argue that you need to plan so that this distraction doesn’t end badly.

Who has DIY face mask?  There have been some very clever seamstresses making face masks at home.  As the PPE situation in Australia and worldwide has been quite dire, we have found that many manufacturing businesses have been innovating and manufacturing different products from normal in an effort to fill the gap, in the available PPE.

Which DIY stores are still delivering?  I know that Bunnings was completely inundated by people buying things ready for DIY projects, so much so that there was a chance they would run out of paint.  With respect to eye protection, we are still operating and shipping.

Why can DIY be bad?  Well, I guess this really depends on your point of view, if you are a handy person.  Then DIY can be excellent, but for those that are operating way outside their skillset, the outcome can be downright dangerous.  Why is DIY handyman, if we were all meant to be DIYers then there would be no need for handymen?

The take-home message that I hope you receive is that you need to research your DIY project to find out if you have the right tools, protective equipment, and skill set.  If not should I wait for help?

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