Instructables

How To Keep Your Instructables Danger-free (even more valid in 2013!!!!)

Picture of How To Keep Your Instructables Danger-free (even more valid in 2013!!!!)
I guess it's time to take the bull by the horns. Many of your Instructables have the potential to cause harm, especially to children. That doesn't have to be the case. We can have fun AND be safe! I make my living as a safety inspector in a Tool & Die plant. In the 16 years I've been there, their injury rate has dropped 30%. So I know what I'm talking about.

Hey folks, let's try to move the issue of safety from the back of our minds to the front! In this Instructable I will share with you some safety tips.
 
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Step 1: Food Allergies are REAL!

Sometimes you all get so excited about your Instructable, you neglect to think of how dangerous it can be. Ask yourself if anyone can be injured if they follow your instructions.

If you are sharing recipes, be sure to include a warning that some people could be allergic some of the ingredients. This is especially important if you are using nuts, peas, fruit and wheat products.

Avoid this line of thinking: "Oh, it's not a problem for me, so why should it be a problem for someone else?"

Food allergies can be serious, folks. Think swollen throat! Think skin rash! Think anaphylactic shock (I know someone who nearly died eating fish)!

Think!

Step 2: Is Fire Involved?

Remember, children visit this site, too. Many are fascinated by fire. Too many homes burn down every year due to children playing with this dangerous element. If you MUST include an Instructable with fire (I'd rather you didn't), it is your responsibility to focus on the dangers.

Make sure you include a way to put out the fire if it gets out of control.

Make sure you tell the readers to have another person nearby should the practicer of the Instructable get burned.

Do not light a flame in the house or near flammable objects.

Do not use fire in a "trick" or stunt. Not worth the risk!

Fire is a good tool. But it is a dangerous tool.
dfrelow2 years ago
so basicly summing up this hole instructable. people are stupid dont forget it!
thomasedisonjr (author)  dfrelow2 years ago
No, it's to remind people to use their heads.
bears03 years ago
i know a friend who lit a bonfire in their bedroom! didnt catch the house on fire though, but i bet it smelled like smoke for a LONG time
Even if injuries have dropped 30%, I wonder what's happened to morale?
junits154 years ago
you have to remember that most (almost all) people have the comon sense to know what is safe or not, and generaly young kids dont have the patience to build something that could be "unsafe".  Hell, most kids <10 years old dont have the patience for school, let along building something from scratch. 

all I'm saying is that you dont have to worry about this stuff, you may be a satfey inspector, at a Tool&Die plant, but you dont have to worry about the saftey here, on instructables.   
Touche.
zoejian5 years ago
I have a condition where when I get really mad my skin gets really hot and I start getting hives all over my body. You should put a disclaimer at the top of every comment you make: "My comments may cause rage". You're comments are putting innocent people at risk!
johntwolfe5 years ago
Wow... I just saw you comment on How to make a pair of Angel Wings saying that you don't approve of his instructable because it doesn't warn about the dangers of flight. Are you for real? What are you instructable's self appointed OSHA Marshal?

Anyways I agree with blooper, if instructables need anything it's two lines:

Experiment at your OWN RISK. I am not responsible for anything that may happen to you as a result of reading and/or following this instructable.

But most people know what's dangerous and if not, "Here's your Darwin Award".

Respectfully Disagreeing
j626no5 years ago
if you want to grab the bull by the horns, stop blaming the creators of the 'ibles. freedom of speech. you dont wanna be on this site, then leave it. sure you want to make it safer, but venture over to the anarchists cookbook and then come back here complaining about safety. this is a community to share ideas, and albeit some of them may possibly result in injury, the primary goal for instructables is to share ideas. as for the "Many of your Instructables have the potential to cause harm, especially to children" claim, well thats to be blaimed on poor parental supervision, not instructables. if you want to make a difference with safety, the way you present yourself to others makes all the difference in the world. suggest that it could be dangerous, do not threaten to "not approve" or condone their 'ible cause honestly, nobody would care. QUESTION..do you have kids? if so, are they in bubbles? if not, they might get exposed to the real world and possibly get injured...OMG!!!! if you dont like this site or its dangerous ways, then leave it. ever wonder why your 'ible isnt featured yet the "dangerous" ones are?
Very Keri5 years ago
You forgot to tell everyone to make sure their Instructable is "holiday neutral". You know, in order to prevent attacks from religious zealots with pitch forks. :P
baconfish5 years ago
Can you come up with examples where someone would read an instructable and be unaware of any of the above mentioned risks without being explicitly warned? I just think that there is a difference between an author being comprehensive in explaining the details of an instructable (not just how to follow along, but how it works) and a reader attempting something without a strong enough understanding. Perhaps I'm overlooking something.
blooper5 years ago
What about these?

  • poisonous fumes
  • explosions
  • chemical burns
  • paper cuts
  • insect stings
  • insufficient speed (getting out of the way of dangerous things)
  • diseases & infections
This instructable's limited nature is dangerous, implying that if all these steps are followed, the results would be safe, which is very far from the case.

I cannot approve it.
nagutron5 years ago
I wonder; Do our experiments at http://labs.false-profit.com/blog/ meet your safety standards?
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