Friday, March 26, 2010

Lawn Mower Safety for Kids

Whether you have a teenager who is ready to earn some bucks mowing lawns this summer, or toddlers who play outside in the yard, it’s important to be aware of important safety tips around lawn mowers.

To keep younger children safe when the lawn is being mowed, make sure that they are a safe distance well away from the area that is being mowed. Be sure that no toys are left out on the lawn while it’s being mowed. A child might run to grab the toy, and at that moment something could fly from the mower and hit the child. Or, the person mowing the lawn could inadvertently run over the toy, sending bits flying out of the mower. Never allow children to ride as passengers on ride-on mowers or garden tractors. It may look cute to see your little guy on dad’s lap atop the big mower, but there’s a risk the child could fall off and get hurt.

Deciding the appropriate age for your child to begin mowing the lawn can be subjective. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children should be at least 12 years of age to operate a walk-behind power mower or hand mower, and 16 to operate a riding mower safely. You need to determine your child’s maturity, good judgment, strength and coordination for the job at hand. Show your child how to mow the lawn properly and safely and supervise until you are sure that he or she is able to do it alone.

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