Basic Knife Safety

Here at Coast we believe that a good knife is an essential tool for any outdoor enthusiast to possess. But a knife is just that – a tool. And like any tool, it’s important for the owner to know exactly how to safely use it. With that in mind, here are a few tips on basic knife handling safety.

Today's Bowie knife looks a lot different than earlier incarnations.

Today’s Bowie knife looks a lot different than earlier incarnations.

1. Always hold the knife by the handle
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people injure themselves by holding a knife by the blade. Any knife blade can be dangerous, but large hunting knives and skinning knives can be especially troublesome if handled incorrectly.

2. Only use your knife for its intended purpose

Using a bowie knife to pry open a can of beans or tighten a loose screw may seem like a good idea, but the incorrect use of knives are a big reason people have knife accidents. Use your knife for its intended purpose, nothing else.

3. Cut away from your body
Not to sound too gruesome, but cutting towards your body is a great way to slice a vein or an artery and end up dead. Cutting away from your body is the safest way to cut something and should be the first thing that pops into your head when you go to use your knife.

4. Never pass a knife to someone blade-first
If possible, close the knife before giving it to someone. If it isn’t a folding knife, your best bet is to lay it down and let the other person pick it up by the handle, guaranteeing no one has to touch the blade.

5. Put the knife away when you’re finished with it
It’s too easy to place a knife on a bench, chair, or the ground and just forget about it. Sheathing your knife or otherwise putting it away when you’re done with it is the only way to avoid accidents.

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