The Dangers of DIY Document Shredding

Tue, Nov 15, 2022 at 11:15AM

The Dangers of DIY Document Shredding

Businesses and individuals alike have a common need: the ability to safely and securely destroy documents that may contain confidential information.

More often than not, those looking to safely destroy these kinds of documents will take matters into their own hands. Unfortunately, DIY document shredding is not as simple as it seems and often presents considerable hazards.

Potential for Serious Injury

Shredders contain sharp mechanisms designed to rip paper and other materials into oblivion.

While the practice itself may be convenient, there have been several serious instances of injuries caused by DIY document shredding. Unfortunately, some of these injuries affected children and pets who got too close.

The solution may not be as simple as keeping the shredder out of reach. What if you have a cat or curious toddler that likes to climb?


Another potential danger of DIY shredding is “deflagration,” or a dust explosion.

Deflagration is what happens when a fire breaks out and consumes loose dust in a compact space. It typically occurs in large shredders and has caused serious injuries and significant structural damage in the past.

Fire Hazard

Paper shredders left plugged in for prolonged periods can become fire hazards. The chances of an accidental blaze increase if these devices are left unattended.

For example, a shredder could malfunction without your knowledge and catch fire while you’re away from your home or office. Such a scenario poses a danger not only to you but also to your loved ones and your home.

Risks of Small Shredders

If you’re using a small consumer-grade shredder, you may not be overly worried about a dust explosion. But while it’s true that smaller shredders aren’t as prone to deflagration as their larger counterparts, the threat remains.

Even if the shredder itself doesn’t malfunction, the shredded paper it spits out is still highly flammable. There have been numerous cases of fires caused by small office shredders.

Get Reliable Trash Pickup

The best way to deal with the hazards posed by DIY shredding is to sidestep them altogether.

Several shredding services provide safe trash pickup in Alachua County and surrounding areas. These operators have proven methods of securing, storing, and eliminating all manner of rubbish and unwanted materials, including documents containing confidential information.

When you schedule a residential or commercial pickup, one of these services will come to you, collect your trash, and be on their way, allowing you to focus on other things.

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