Turning Archive 2007

Lesson learned (long but worth it)

Jason Clark
>I'm mostly a lurker but thought that the lesson learned here could be of some value to turners everywhere.

A little over a week ago another member of the Arizona Woodturners Association let a couple of us locals know that the City of Tempe was going to remove several large Mesquite trees from the side of the road. 4 of us hooked up on Thursday afternoon to cut the trunks left by the city crew into managable pieces and to haul it off.

About an hour into cutting I was in the middle of cutting an 18" log into pieces about 18" long when a car driving past at 45+ MPH threw a large sized fast food cup out the window and directly at me. I had my back turned to the road and never saw it coming. It struck me full force on my right side just above my hip and right below my ribs. The force of the impact nearly knocked me off my feet and had the chainsaw I was using at the time not been buried deep in the log who know what other injuries may have been sustained. The car continued driving and everything happened so fast we were unable to get a licence plate number.

This photo was taken a couple of hours later, the impact of the bottom of the cup is clearly visable. It's now 4 days later and my side is still bruised up pretty good.

What I hope everyone can learn from this incident is that working that close to the road we should have had a lookout, we all know and trust each other but it's the people you don't know that are the real wildcard.


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