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Nail Gun Safety: A Guide for Construction Contractors


September 2011
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2011-202
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Nail guns are widely used on many construction jobs, especially in residential construction. While they boost productivity they may also cause tens of thousands of painful injuries each year. This publication is intended to provide a resource for residential home builders and construction contractors, subcontractors, and supervisors to prevent these kinds of injuries.

The guidance was developed in response to a unanimous motion by industry, state, and labor stakeholders on OSHA’s Advisory Committee for Construction Safety and Health (ACCSH) on the need to develop awareness and materials about nail gun risks. OSHA and NIOSH worked together to make sure the guidance reflects the most current information available. The guidance highlights what is known about nail gun injuries, including the parts of the body most often injured and the types of severe injuries that have been reported. It describes the common causes of nail gun injuries and provides six practical steps that contractors can take to prevent these injuries. The guidance includes actual workplace cases along with a short section on other types of nail gun hazards and sources of additional information. Our hope is that by working together with tool gun manufacturers, safety and health professionals, and other organizations, we can improve nail gun safety on the job site. View a message from the Directors of NIOSH and OSHA supporting the nail gun safety guidance. NIOSH-OSHA-Nail-Guns-Cover-Letter.pdf [PDF – 289 KB]

Nail Gun Safety: A Guide for Construction Contractors [PDF – 1,618 KB]

en Español: Seguridad con las pistolas de clavos: Guía para los contratistas del sector de la construcción

Ordering Information

Contacting NIOSH

To receive documents or more information about occupational safety and health topics, please contact NIOSH: 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636); TTY: 1-888-232-6348; e-mail: DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2011-202 or DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2011-202 (Sp2012) for the Spanish language version.

Contacting OSHA

To order additional copies of this publication, to get a list of other OSHA publications, to ask questions or to get more information, or to file a confidential complaint, contact OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or TTY: 1-877-889-5627 or go to OSHA Publication Number 3459-8-11 or OSHA Publication Number 3505–07 2012 for the Spanish language version.