Summertime is the perfect opportunity to get your kids active and engaged in making your lawn beautiful. The benefits of this are many. It’s fun to be outside in the fresh air as a family. It’s awesome to teach your kids this forever-skill. It’s cool to give your tweens and teens a “marketable skill” for earning some extra ice cream money.
But, safety is the utmost priority. We’ve turned to the American Academy of Pediatrics for key bullets about youth lawn mower safety. Following are their recommendations.
LAWN MOWER SAFETY
- Only use a mower with a control that stops the mower blade from moving if the handle is let go.
- Children younger than 16 years should not be allowed to use ride-on mowers. Children younger than 12 years should not use walk-behind mowers.
- Make sure that sturdy shoes are worn while mowing.
- Prevent injuries from flying objects, such as stones or toys, by picking up objects from the lawn before mowing begins. Have anyone who uses a mower wear hearing and eye protection.
- Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you mow in reverse.
- Always turn off the mower and wait for the blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, or crossing gravel paths, roads, or other areas.
- Do not allow children to ride as passengers on ride-on mowers.
- Keep children out of the yard while mowing.
- Drive up and down slopes, not across to prevent mower rollover.
- Keep guards, shields, switches, and safety devices in proper working order at all times.
- If children must be in the vicinity of running lawnmowers, they should wear polycarbonate protective eye wear at all times.
© American Academy of Pediatrics, 2016