Articles and Education for Knives

Safe use of knives and safety cutters in the workplace

With box cutters and utility knives being so common and easy to use, some people make the mistake of thinking that they are completely safe to use. Even using a so-called “safety knife” has some risk if the safety knife is used incorrectly. Therefore it is very important to follow safe knife handling procedures at all times.

Utility knives and box cutters are common in today’s workplace. Utility knives are used in a variety of applications such as shipping, receiving, grocery store stocking, restaurant work, meat packing, construction, manufacturing, and more. In fact, all places where boxes, cartons, bags, shrink wrap and other materials must be cut or opened, you will find utility knives and cutters.

Occupational hand injuries in the workplace are all too common. It is estimated that more than $3,000 worth of health care, worker's compensation and loss in productivity can be attributed to just one cut or laceration to the hand. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that more than $300 million is spent for hand lacerations each year.

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Tips for the safe use of knives.
Keep these useful knife safety tips in mind whether you're using one of our safety knives, or a regular box cutter, pocket knife or razor blade. These safety tips will help you avoid injury to yourself or others on the job or at home. Do you have any additional knife safety tips you think should be included on our list? If so, please let us know and we will consider using your tip. Heck, we might even throw a freebie your way, just to show our thanks.

Here is a link to our knife safety tips page.
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Safe Box cutting knife practices

Boxes:  Children play in them, adults move stuff in them.  The common thread is that sooner or later, the boxes need to be opened, cut down, and flattened.  Improvised box cutters and openers include scissors, car keys, pens, or even the healthy stomp of a boot.  To one degree or another, these methods can work.  If you work in the retail world, you probably know how horrid it can be to try and flatten or cut hundreds of boxes with something that wasn't made for the job (I've been there myself far too much!).  Our Box Cutters are specifically for cutting opening, cutting, and flattening boxes (hopefully the name hinted at that).  Regardless of which model you use, here are some helpful tips to prevent injury while using any box cutter:

Retract the blade when not in use.  If the blade automatically retracts, don’t assume that it’s retracted just because you've removed your hand.  The adhesives from boxing tape can accumulate on an old blade and prevent correct retraction.

Always use sharp blades.  Whenever a blade becomes dull or caked with rust, residue, or anything else, it’s best to chuck it and replace it with a new one.  Using a dull blade requires more applied force, and therefore increases the likelihood and severity of lacerations.

Always pay attention to what you are doing.  When you begin a project, don’t allow anything to divert your attention while working.  Always grasp the object firmly before cutting, and mind where you place your other hand as you cut.

Make sure that others are a safe distance from you as you cut.  Also, make sure that your working environment is always tidy, and that those around you are aware of what you are doing.

When finished, always store the box cutter in a conspicuous location, such as a shelf, holster, or hanger.  Do not store them in partially obscured places where people can reach without seeing that it is there.

Here on, we have scores (pun intended) of box cutters to select from!  My particular favorite is the S4 Safety Cutter.  It’s so easy to use!  It also has a tape splitter so that I don’t have to use the blade any more than necessary.  This also helps to prolong the life of the blade, because it doesn't become coated in adhesives as quickly.  When the blade needs replacing, it’s a cinch, and includes its own spare blade compartment.  We have both auto and manual blade retraction models.

Be sure to explore our full range of box cutters to find exactly what you need!

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Don't Become a Pedestrian Statistic

…this S7 Safety Carton Cutter would be his tool of choice!  Okay, it really is only a carton cutter, but it is so much more than that!  The clever innovators behind this nearly epiphanous design know what is needed to get the job done efficiently and conveniently.  Included in the S7’s sleek design are a number of features that ensure that it is the last tool you will ever need in the warehouse!  It has a concealable film cutter, excellent for quickly and easily slicing away obnoxious plastic wraps.  It also has an incorporated tape splitter, useful for safely opening boxes without a blade.  Concealed inside is a (secret) compartment for storing spare blades, readily available for an easy change.

Naturally, James Bond would never use something that wasn’t suited for him, or that could potentially hurt him, and you don’t have to settle for less either!  The S7 wouldn’t be called a “Safety” cutter if in fact it wasn’t safe (which it is!).  It includes a plethora of safety features, including a blunt safety tip blade so that you or your merchandise don't suffer puncture damage.  Furthermore, it has a sturdy metal blade guard to protect the hands, as well as variable blade depth in order to use just enough blade for the job, but not enough to be potentially dangerous.  And if you’re a leftie?  No worries!  The S7 safety knife is ambidextrous, making it the perfect choice for everyone!

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Cut-Resistant Gloves: Slicing Costs, Not Hands

There are many workplaces today that require regular use of cut-resistant gloves.  ANSI, the American National Standards Institute, places regulations on what safety requirements need to be met.  In spite of this, there is an average of 439,000 crippling hand injuries that take place every year!  The average insurance payment cost for each of these injuries is $3,856, with average medical payments at about $2,600.  Do the math, and that’s MILLIONS of dollars in repairing damages that ought not to have happened.  Here are some quick tips to help you slice costs, rather than hands:

Every glove has its own unique characteristics unique to the materials and structure it’s composed of.  For example, steel mesh gloves tend to have a higher deflective capacity than a Kevlar or spectra fiber, but may likely sacrifice some manual dexterity.  On the other hand, the steel mesh may aid in grasping wet or slippery objects.  This is why the mesh gloves tend to be favored in the poultry and meat processing industries.  That, and you feel awesome when you wear one.

Consider on the other hand that you work in a restaurant.  A steel mesh glove is obviously not the right choice for the kitchen.  Perhaps the best choice for you would be a Kevlar, or Kevlar polymer glove.  It allows a greater degree of dexterity, while retaining a high level of cut resistance.  You could also consider using the Digiguard, which is a much simpler device that offers great protection for those who do less-frequent cutting.  It may also be wise to watch for anti-bacterial glove variants to help ensure health safety at the same time.

Be mindful of the nature of your cutting.  Most cut-resistant gloves are not rated for machinated blades and saws.  Furthermore, many gloves that have high cut-resistance may lack puncture resistance.  It’s important to choose the right glove for the job.  If the gloves are needed for a workplace in which a stab or puncture is more likely, then a glove that is designed to withstand that is recommended.  For most general purposes, however, standard cut-resistant gloves will do the job.  Check out our line of cut-resistant safety gloves and start saving money today!
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How to safely open hard plastic clam shell packages.
We’re in the most advanced technological age in the history of the world. We as a human race have been into outer space, we’ve been to the depths of the sea, and we’ve got flight made into an ordinary ordeal. Our cars are sleek, fast, and efficient. We’ve harnessed all of the power of the world in forms of petroleum, natural gas, nuclear generator, wind, and water. Yet with all of this proudly displayed on humanity’s decorum, how is it that we still can’t get past using these wretched clamshell packages?
I don’t think that there’s a soul in the whole country that hasn’t dealt with one of these infamous monsters before. You know, the ones that live up to their name: Clamshell. Like their marine namesake, the clamshell packages are the most irritating of all packaging. While many manufacturers continue with conventional means such as boxes and the like, many continue on with their seemingly insane design of clamshell packages.
Here’s what you may not know about them, the “why” of clamshell packages: They solve most of the key problems that other conventional packaging methods have. One of the most important factors is product security. Not only does it make for a protective case for the item while it is in transit, but it also makes it infinitely harder for someone to steal once it’s on the shelves, for the packaging is too bulky to escape with, and far too difficult to deal with in the store without drawing attention to one’s self. Additionally, the clamshell has great marketing advantages. People can see all parts of what they are buying, so there are fewer returns. On the other hand, with a box, people often find the contents therein to be different than expectation (wouldn’t this be remedied by READING the box?). Furthermore, clamshell packaging is often cheaper than conventional packaging, making it preferable overall by most manufacturers.
With that, it appears to be an unfortunate reality that we must continue to face the dreaded clamshell package. What can be done? There are many occasionally suitable one-time answers, such as attempting to open it a can opener, or chancing your precious flesh on a pocket knife. Realistically, there’s no great long-term solution. That is, except for the ZIPit Clamshell Opener! Picture the can opener trick, only with a tool that’s designed for the job! That’s exactly what the ZIPit is! It’s battery powered, and completely safe for hundreds of uses with no frustration, no sweat, and, most importantly no blood! Simply line it up on the edge of the package and press the button, and it does the rest! No more wrestling with scissors, knives, or first aid kits!
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