I believe that a knife is the single most important tool we can have in a survival situation. A knife is your friend, but like many things, if you use it incorrectly it can hurt you. Over the years, I have seen people do stupid things with their knives and end up hurt. Knife safety is like firearms safety, you have to follow the rules at all times.
With a knife, the dangerous parts are the sharp edge and the pointed tip. If you follow a few simple rules, you should never cause unnecessary injury to others or yourself
Follow these knife safety guidelines
- Always handle your knife with care, remember it is a weapon.
- Cut away from your body, not toward it, I have seen people hurt by making this simple mistake.
- If you drop your knife, let it fall. Don’t attempt to catch it. I once saw someone try to catch a dropped knife with his bare foot. He succeeded point first.
- Never run with a knife.
- Don’t throw a knife to anyone. Hand it to them, handle first.
- Always keep your knife sharp: a properly sharpened knife functions better than a dull one and is safer to use. This is one I have trouble convincing my wife is true.
- Never point a knife at anyone.
- Do not use a locking blade if the lock is malfunctioning.
- Keep your knife folded or sheathed when carrying or storing. Never leave a knife lying around where someone can get accidently cut.
- Use a sharpening stone, not a power grinder to sharpen your knife. A power grinder can over heat the edge making it brittle.
- Use your knife for what it is intended.
- Don’t use a knife for prying. It can cause the tip to break, possibly causing injury.
- Never leave a knife submerged in dishwater, someone might get a nasty surprise when they reach into grab something.
- Keep your knife clean and well maintained.
As you can see all of these knife safety rules are just common sense, but occasionally we need to review them, since we all make mistakes at times. In a survival situation that small mistake that may be of no consequence in normal times, may become life threatening in a survival situation.