High School Student Sustains a Partial Thumb Tip Amputation While Using a Sander in Shop Class - Massachusetts

Massachusetts Case Report: 15MA1NF
Release Date: March 31, 2017

SUMMARY

In 2015, a 9th grade student enrolled in a Marine Technology program in a Chapter 74 approved public
regional technical high school education program sustained a partial thumb tip amputation injury. The
student was operating a combination belt and disc sander in shop class when the student’s gloved right
hand thumb came in contact with the rotating disc sander. The glove and the student’s thumb were
partially pulled into the machine. Immediately after the incident occurred, a junior who was
supervising the freshman student immediately turned off the machine and started to disassemble the
machine to free the student. The student was brought to the school nurse who placed a call for
emergency medical services (EMS). The local police and EMS arrived at the incident location within
minutes. The injured student was transported to a hospital in another state where the partially
amputated thumb tip was reattached with 12 stitches and the injured student was then released from the
hospital.

Contributing factors identified in this investigation included, greater than 1/16 of an inch space
between the sanding table and disc, wearing gloves while operating the sander, not being fully trained
on the sander prior to use and inexperience.

High School Student Sustains a Partial Thumb Tip Amputation While Using a Sander in Shop Class – MassachusettsCdc-pdf [PDF 432 KB]

Page last reviewed: September 6, 2017