Table Saw Injury (KV 153)


What Happened?

At 7:30 a.m. on May 9, 2017, an employee was guiding a piece of wood through a table saw. As he pushed the piece of wood with his right hand and received another piece of wood with his left hand, a kickback occurred.

The employee inadvertently reached with his left hand and made direct contact with the saw blade, resulting in the amputation of his index, middle and ring fingers on his left hand. He was hospitalized and received treatment.

Contributing Factors

The incident investigation revealed that the spreader used to control and keep the wood separated upon completion of the cut was not attached to the back side of the saw.

What Can We Learn?


If the employee had used the Self Check he would have been able to identify the spreader being unattached from the back of the saw.

Use of a Questioning Attitude may have also helped identify the hazard present with the table saw.


The employee exposed himself to the Overconfidence trap. He assumed everything was in good working order when he started his work and felt comfortable enough to proceed without any form of a pre-inspection.

Ask the Right Questions

How does this relate to our work?

Where do we have similar traps?

What Tools can we use to avoid a similar incident?

Was a stop work point missed?