Posted 01-23-2007 at 20:39:01 [URL] [DELETE]
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Steering wheel spinners
I ran into one of my neighbors at the Co-op this afternoon, and noticed he had a cast on his right forearm with a rigid thumb splint. He's a retired machinist in his late 60's, and has severe arthritis in his hands. I hadn't seen him in two weeks, and asked what had happened.
He explained that he had been moving snow after last weekend's storm with his 2N, and the snow was deep enough (9" of wet snow) that he couldn't see the distinguishing landmarks around his home. He cut a turn too short while pulling into his driveway, and his right front wheel rolled into the ditch striking the culvert spinning the steering wheel around in his hand. He had put a steering wheel spinner or "suicide knob" on the wheel due to his arthritis, and it had caught his thumb while his right elbow was trapped against his waist as the tractor struck the culvert.
He suffered a dislocated thumb, several torn and stretched ligaments in his thumb, wrist and elbow, as well as a spiral fracture in his wrist as a result. His doctor said he'll be wearing the cast for at least six weeks, and has been prescribed anti-inflammatory meds as well as pain killers while healing.
Just a cautious reminder if you're driving equipment with a steering wheel spinner attached, as they have been known to seriously injure the operator. We've removed them from all powered industrial equipment at the plant I work in for that very reason.