Lawnmower Safety Tips
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Risk for Injury
More than 235,000 adults and 17,000 children in the U.S. were injured by lawn mowers in 2010, according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. Boys sustain 80% of lawnmower injuries, which most often occur on the arms or the hands.
Riding lawn mowers cause more injuries each year than push mowers, because they tip and roll over, placing a child at risk of being run over and severely injured.
Preventing Lawnmower Injuries
Fortunately, most lawn mower injuries can be prevented. The list below provides some useful guidelines for staying safe around lawn mowers. Most importantly, both adults and children must be aware of a lawn mower’s inherent dangers.
- Always wear sturdy shoes while mowing the lawn – do not wear sandals or mow barefoot
- Remove stones, toys, and debris from the lawn before mowing to prevent injuries from flying objects
- Always wear eye and hearing protection
- Only use a mower that has protection over hot and sharp parts
- Riding mowers should have the reverse switch behind the driver, forcing the driver to look behind when placing the machine in reverse
- Push mowers should have a control that stops forward motion when the handle is released
- If children must be in the yard during mowing, they should remain at least 20 feet away from the running lawn mower at all times. Ideally, children should not be allowed outside in the yard when the grass is being cut
- Children should never be passengers on ride-on mowers
- Rather than try to sharpen a blade that’s very dull or nicked, have it professionally sharpened or replaced
First Aid Treatment
Immediately following a lawn mower accident, call 911 or visit a doctor or emergency room. Before the injured person is transported to a hospital or medical center, try to identify and stabilize the injury.
Reference: American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons