[EMS Discuss] PVC cutter + electricity and carelessness = pow!

Mon Oct 14 07:28:50 PDT 2013


In aviation, part of our safety culture is that when we screw something up, we confess, confess, confess so that someone else might learn from it. It's not because we think everyone else is a screwup, but if we could keep all of our screw ups unique that would be nice. 

Welp, I screwed up today with something related to safety in the shop and I wanted to share it with other people so that they might get something from it.

As you can see, I was using my PVC cutter to cut some pipe immediately next to the live power line for the blue hot glue gun. It turns out that the PVC cutter is very capable of cutting through thin wire as well as plastic. I discovered this in a shower of sparks when it exploded in front of me and left the big scorch that you see there on the pipe.

The other victim of my carelessness was the blade on my PVC cutter that I brought in from home. This sparking damage is pretty impressive I think, especially considering that it's one of the really big heavy duty blades. The exploding metal from that might be what dazzled me in fact.

I have replaced the hot glue gun so whoever owns or contributed the blue one, I hope that this craftsman one is an acceptable substitute. I have put the broken hot glue gun up in the top area in case anyone wants to repair it.  I may take a stab at that myself if no one beats me to it.

So I guess the moral of the story is: don't do that thing that I did. No injuries other than my pride, a hot glue gun, and my PVC cutter. Had I been grounded differently, the outcome might've been different so pay heed and like I said, don't do that thing that I did.

- Ben
- Ben
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