How to use the chainsaw safely
All chainsaw safety instructions revolve around the elimination of risk. The chainsaw is perfectly manageable if you use it correctly and in a safe manner. Dangers can arise when it is used outside recommended guidelines, which are more risky.
The most important thing you will ever get told when operating a chainsaw is to make sure you have two hands on the chainsaw at all times. Most chainsaws have two handles for a reason, so make sure you are holding them both in a secure manner. If you are only using one hand to hold the chainsaw, it is nowhere near as manageable, which makes it much more dangerous.
When using the machine make sure that you have a secure footing and your balance is evenly spread across your body. You should, if possible, avoid cutting above shoulder height. If you do experience kickback, working above shoulder height becomes far more risky and is harder to control.
Before you start your work you need to make sure the area you are working in is safe. Particularly when you are cutting down trees you need to make sure there is space for the tree to fall down whilst also providing you an escape route so it doesn't fall on you. You also need to make sure it doesn’t take down a power line or even your house. If you are cutting smaller pieces of wood make sure there aren’t any nails that your chain blade may come into contact with. This can make the whole endeavour much more unpredictable, which is not what you will want when working with dangerous machinery.
Even if you are just chopping logs for firewood you still need to make sure you are safe. You will need to be certain there are no distractions such as pets or children. If you are cutting logs it is safer to use a sawhorse. If you are cutting on the floor you are putting your body more at risk from the kickback due to your stance.
To start the machine properly you will need to place it on the flat ground. The starting procedure can differ depending on the manufacturer and the power source. With all chainsaws the first port of call must be the manufacturer’s instructions. All McCulloch models come also with a decal on the machine to help with the starting procedure however the manual will have this in much more detail. At all times when the machine isn’t in operation, you will need to make sure the chain brake is on. Where possible, if you are setting the machine down to take a break, it is often safer to turn the machine off rather than let it keep running.