Chainsaw Safety Tips - Safe operating procedures can minimize potential injuries ...

Chainsaw Safety Tips


Using proper personal protective equipment (PPE) and safe operating procedures can minimize potential injuries.

Suggestions for areas to include in a Tool box Talk for staff and family members about Chainsaw use.

Before Starting:  

  • Ensure proper personal protective equipment is worn when operating the saw, which includes hand, foot, leg, eye, face, hearing and head protection;
  • Ensure you clothing does not have anything the blade can get caught on;
  • Always check controls, chain tension, bolts and handles to ensure that they are functioning properly and that they are adjusted according to the manufacturer’s instructions;
  • Ensure that the chain is sharp and that the lubrication reservoir is full; and
  • Move to at least 10 feet from any fueling area, with the chain’s brake engaged, before starting.


  • Use approved containers for transporting fuel to the saw;
  • Dispense fuel at least 10 feet away from any sources of ignition;
  • Use a funnel or a flexible hose when pouring fuel into the saw;
  • Never attempt to fuel a running or HOT saw; and
  • Never smoke during fueling.

General Saw Safety:

  • Ensure that the saw’s chain path is clear of dirt, debris, small tree limbs and rocks;
  • Look for nails, spikes or other metal in the tree/ wood before cutting;
  • Always start the saw on the ground or on another firm support;
  • Keep your hands on the saw’s handles, and maintain secure footing while operating the saw;
  • Shut off the saw or engage its chain brake when carrying the saw on rough or uneven terrain;
  • Watch for branches under tension, they may spring out when cut;
  • Gasoline-powered chain saws must be equipped with a protective device that minimizes chainsaw kickback; and
  • To avoid kick-back, do not saw with the tip. If equipped, keep tip guard in place.