Use sense when renting large pieces of equipment

By Keith Boles - bio | email feedback

BLYTHEVILLE, AR (KAIT) --Every year hundreds of homeowners or family members are injured or even killed by power tools or bigger pieces of equipment they rent and are unfamiliar with.

I went to Blytheville to see what was available and how dangerous it could be.

To be honest lots of folks get injured or killed using hand tools like saws and drills incorrectly.

But what about when you need something a bit larger for that deck or pool or yard cleanup project?

With the weather being good now is the time when the big toys roll in.

The first thing that Shawn Warren who handles inside sales for RSC Equipment Rentals showed me were their pressure washers.

"The pressure washers that we carry average 25 to 35 hundred PSI which is pounds per square inch. It can do serious bodily damage."

Judging by what it did to a piece of wood, It was easy to imagine taking off or cutting your skin, or losing a finger.

It's the time of year when many homeowners rent large equipment to tackle projects around the home. Equipment they may not be familiar with.

Warren, "A lot of rentals on the mini excavators, walk behind trenchers and garden tillers are the big one."

All of which have numerous moving, dangerous parts which in inexperienced hands can wind up causing a serious injury, damage or even death.

Warren, "If you get really, really busy or get confused or distracted, these will tip over very easily, very quickly."

We took the mini track hoe outside for some hands on time.

Just like any customer I was given pretty good instructions on how to use the machine.

Above all Shawn says when you operate one of these things. Safety is the key concern. That's what they try and tell their operators, their rental operators before they take it away.

Warren, "And our main goal is to educate every individual on the proper education of the equipment the proper safety measures they need to follow."

Most equipment comes liberally covered with warning stickers but common sense has to be used as well such as not putting up a scissors lift into a power line or sticking your foot into the rotating tillers or post hole augers.

Shawn suggests to any homeowner running equipment they wear steel toe shoes, safety glasses gloves and a hard hat if you are working in places where something might fall on you.

And of course even though the kids are dying for a ride or to be around this piece of equipment. An inexperienced operator can crush someone in seconds simply by moving the wrong lever.

Warren, "It's a big piece of steel, you need to respect it and operate it safely and make sure you do it in a manner that you're gonna be able to walk away from it at the end of the day."

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