Ha Ha! It seems when machinist get old, they start wood working!
When ripping, I keep my hips just to the right of the fence, left foot forward, more standing abit sideways facing toward the left.
I can peer down watching the board edge against the fence. I always use some form of push blocks, or a long push block, then finaly pushing the work past the blade with the left hand.
The blocks have hand holds taller then the fence.
It seem to me, and from a few incidents, I have had wood break in pieces a couple of times, the pieces flew out past me, as the fence was a barrier of sorts.
The last time that happened, the force pushed me back, the push blocks were blown out of both hands.
With my left foot more forward along the front of the saw, this kept me from falling back into the blade.
The wood was a hundred yr old spruce beam, that I resawed first on the band saw, ran through the jointer, then was truing the second edge on the table saw. The wood showed no cracks, but is very brittle.
The first wood that came apart like that on me, was black walnut with really nice looking grain pattern. I didnt get hit, but my hand was cut by the wood. So, after that, no bare hands on the wood.
Those were pretty eye opening incidents, no time to react, just bang, and pieces are flying.
The first time that happened, I was blown back, then fell back with a hand hitting the blade gaurd. Glad, I had the gaurd on there!
Now, I expect that can happen, so I try to keep my body balance in the opposite direction of the blade, as the second time that happened, the blade gaurd was blown to the up posistion.
With my left foot more forward, I didnt fall back into the blade.
Perhaps there is no truly safe place to be when things go wrong like that, hope for the best, try to be prepared for the worst.