According to national studies, an average of 13 children are treated in emergency departments every day and approximately 4,800 children are treated each year for lawn mower-related injuries.
“Lawn mowers are machines designed for cutting — they do not differentiate between grass, arms, or legs,” says Dr. Kenneth Bono, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Akron Children’s Hospital. “They are not toys to ride on, and must be respected for the machines they are.”
These quick and simple lawn mower safety tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics will ensure a safe summer for everyone:
- Do not allow children to ride as passengers and keep them out of the yard when mowing. Don’t even allow children to play on or near mowers when they are not being used.
- Be aware of other people around you, especially children, while mowing.
- Always turn the mower off and wait for the blades to stop completely before performing any maintenance, unclogging the mower, or crossing gravel paths or roads.
- Use a stick or broom handle, not your hands or feet, to unclog a lawn mower.
- Wear sturdy shoes (not sandals) when operating the mower.
- Children should be at least 12 years old before operating a push lawn mower, and 16 to operate a riding lawn mower. An adult should supervise teens before they are allowed to operate mowers on their own.
- Pick up possible flying objects, such as stones or toys, prior to mowing to prevent injury.
- Drive up and down slopes, not across, to prevent mower rollover.
Click here for other important summer safety tips.
For more information, visit akronchildrens.org