Lots of people love chainsaws: homeowners who buck firewood and build fences; ranchers who cut trees and clear their properties, wood artists who carve bears and benches from logs. You know who doesn’t like chainsaws? Emergency room surgeons who see way too many chainsaw injuries. Unlike a slip with a wood chisel, or even an accidental slice on a table saw, chainsaw injuries typically range from bad to horrific (the average number of stitches from a chainsaw injury? One hundred and ten.). Whether it’s powered by a gas engine or an electric motor, a chainsaw has dozens of fully exposed teeth spinning aggressively around its bar, and all it takes is a moment of inattention to end up with a Frankenstein scar or two.
But you can work safely with a chainsaw; all it takes is strict attention to basic safety practices and a well maintained saw. The majority of accidents occur because these rules of preparation and safety are ignored.