Lawn mowers are some of the most common household tools used in our backyards. Although we use them periodically, we rarely understand the safety precautions and elements that ought to accompany their use. Failure to adhere to such safety tips would lead to significant safety incidences. Here are some of the top 5 safety tips that you should know and consider before using your lawn mower.
- Read the user manual first
Although it sounds odd to read a user manual for such a tool, going through the manual gives you a head-start on what you should or shouldn’t do when running your machine. The manual also contains instructions relating to how the mower should be operated and the safety systems and limits of the same. Some mowers have special features which you should be well knowledgeable of before using them.
- Use personal protection equipment (PPE)
The use of lawn mowers on your backyard exposes you to some serious safety risks. For instance, when running at top speed, the blades can launch pieces of grass at speeds that when lodged in your eyes can cause serious injury. Some of the personal protective equipment that you should use includes safety goggles to protect your eyes from trajectories, leather hand gloves, earmuffs to protect your ears from the over 85 decibels of engine sounds, gumboots, and an overall gown to protect your clothes from dirt. Such protection ensures your safety from any possible injury.
- Scout the mowing space first
Before mowing some space, it is always advisable to comb the lawn you intend to mow in order to remove any pieces of material that can obstruct the blades. Pieces of wood, stones, and uneven ground, if mowed, can become trajectories which can injure you or other persons around. Passing the blades over such material could also pose some serious damage to the blades. Scanning the area would also give you an idea of how to go about the mowing process.
- Maintenance of the machine
Like any other machine, a lawn mower deserves a good check-up. It is always advisable to conduct a thorough check-up of your mower before starting mowing and after the mowing process. As a safety process, the maintenance checks ensure that any loose nuts are identified and tightened in order to maintain the integrity of the machine, therefore preventing safety issues. The checks are also meant to identify any possible areas that need attention such as tire pressure, lubricating of moving parts, fuel levels, among others. Attending to such minor maintenances makes the machine safe for use.
- Avoid mowing in reverse
This may sound unbelievable and minor, but always mow when pushing the machine ahead of you. Avoid, at all cost, pulling the mover towards you when the blades are spinning. It is easy to trip and fall backward and have the mower come right over you, tearing you apart! Unless the mower is a sit-on-and-drive machine, do not mow by moving backward.