The US Consumer Products Safety Commission is considering new safety regulations for table saws, based on a petition asking for a requirement that table saws should be equipped with a device to reduce or prevent injuries if the operator makes hand contact with the blade. The commission can write a performance standard for new saws, require manufacturers to adopt a voluntary standard, or require labeling about the dangers of using a table saw. Part of the process is for the commission to request comments from the public on the proposed rule. The document regarding this is available online from the federal register. The public comment period for this proposed rule expires on December 12, 2011, and we encourage all of our readers to submit a comment directly to the CPSC. Instructions for submitting comments by mail are within the document, or comments may be submitted online at regulations.gov.
We have written extensively on this blog about the issue, and the outcome of this rule-making process will have a profound effect on all woodworkers. We hope you will take the time to examine both sides of this issue, consider the scope and costs of the problem versus the consequences of proposed solutions, and participate in the comment process.
Popular Woodworking Magazine has free articles available online about safe use of the table saw.