Suggestions For Lawnmower Safety

Tips on how to safely mow your lawn.
Suggestions For Lawnmower Safety - Articles
Suggestions For Lawnmower Safety

Each year millions of people mow great swatches of grass and weeds week after week without so much as a stubbed toe. Meanwhile, there will be 70,000 injuries serious enough for a visit to the emergency room.

The majority of mowing accidents are the result of:

  • contact with the rotating blade
  • propelled objects
  • ride mowers overturning
  • running over an individual

Children younger than 12 years of age should not operate large ride-on mowers.

Protect everyone from flying debris or being run over.

  • Make sure area is clear of people, especially children.
  • Clear the area of any sticks, rocks, toys, or other debris.
  • Know the lay of the land! Check for dips, holes and other landscape obstacles

Protect eyes, hearing, and feet

  • Wear safety glasses or goggles.
  • Use hearing protection devices.
  • Wear sturdy shoes rather than athletic shoes or sandals.
  • Long pants and gloves are recommended.

Beware of blades

  • An adult should make adjustments to the mowing height before mowing.
  • Make sure the blades have completely stopped before removing the grass catcher.
  • Machines are not toys.
  • One seat. One rider. No exceptions.

Go at the right speed and the right direction:

  • Slower is safer!
  • Mow only in forward.
  • Riding mowers should move up or down a slope.
  • Push mowers should move across a slope.
  • Always check behind you for children and others before backing up.

If you are doing anything but mowing:

  • Disengage the blades and/or stop the engine.
  • Turn off the mower if you leave it for any reason.
  • Try to use a mower that disengages the blade or shuts off the engine if the handle is let go.

Stay aware of the mower's discharge area:

  • Stop the mower if anyone enters the area.

Wait at least two minutes for the engine to cool if you need to refuel.

Finally, if using a riding mower on a slope, make sure you understand the special considerations and safe practices that can be found in the operators manual and online.

Authors

Dennis Murphy, Ph.D.