Any tool powerful enough to slice through wood can do the same to human flesh, so chainsaw injuries are often serious. If you rent a saw, be sure to get a demonstration of how it works, including its safety features. Then make sure your saw is sharp, properly tensioned, and in good condition.
Some chainsaw injuries are caused by operator error. But, kickback is the greatest cause of injuries. In kickback, the upper chain “grabs” in the wood or an obstruction & forces the saw backward, causing operator to either lose control of the saw or lose balance. This brings the saw in contact with the body. Some chainsaws have chain brakes designed to instantly stop after kickback. These don’t prevent kickback, but can reduce severity of injury.
Carry the saw below your waist, with the engine off and guide bar pointed to the rear, so if you trip the saw drops behind you. It’s dangerous to work alone with chainsaws. Have a companion within calling distance.
If your saw is electric, make sure you use an extension cord that’s approved for outdoor use and don’t use the saw in a damp environment. Fuel your gasoline powered chainsaw outdoors -careful not to overfill or spill fuel. Never refuel a hot saw. Let it cool down & have a fire extinguisher near.