Summertime Safety: Avoiding Lawnmower Accidents07/20/2012 - EDMOND, Okla.,
What could be more a part of summer than the sound of lawnmowers and the smell of fresh cut grass? However, each year, approximately 75,000 people are injured seriously enough by lawnmowers to require emergency room medical treatment. "Only a small percentage of the injuries are caused by mechanical failure," says Edmond Allstate Agent Mark Muse. "Most are the result of human error."
To help prevent lawnmower accidents and injuries, here are some tips from the Insurance Information Institute and Allstate Insurance to follow before and while mowing your lawn:
- Become familiar with your mower. Read the owner's manual before using the mower for the first time. Note all safety and operating instructions. Learn the controls well enough to act instantly in an emergency and to stop the machine quickly.
- Proper clothing is essential to protect your body from harm. Always wear non-slip shoes instead of tennis shoes or sandals. Steel-toe safety footwear offers the most protection against the blade. Long pants help protect your legs from objects that may be thrown from under the mower. Use ear plugs to prevent hearing loss caused by exposure to the high noise levels.
- Never leave a mower running unattended. A mower left running unattended can be fascinating to a child. If the mower has an electric start, the key should never be left in the ignition.
- Always start the mower outdoors. Never operate a mower where carbon monoxide can collect, such as in a closed garage, storage shed or basement.
- Police the area. Be sure the lawn is free of tree limbs, rocks, wires and other debris, which can get caught up in the blades.
- The main source of danger is the blade. To perform its task efficiently, the blade must be sharp and travel at a high speed. It can cause serious injury if a hand or foot is allowed to get under the mower while the engine is running. Never attempt to unclog or work on a lawnmower while the engine is running.
- Disconnect the sparkplug wire. Any time it is necessary to reach under the mower, disconnect the spark plug wire to insure that the engine cannot start. It takes a little extra time, but not as long as it does to recover from a serious injury.
- Check for frayed or cut wiring. If using an electric lawnmower, wires can easily get cut by the blade. Keep an eye on the wiring as you move the mower and check for frayed or cut wiring every time you mow.
For more information on this and other safety topics, contact Mark Muse at (405) 359-0061.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, serving approximately 16 million households through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names. Widely known by its slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®," Allstate offers insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives, as well as via www.allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®. As part of Allstate's commitment to strengthen local communities, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate employees, agency owners and the corporation provided $28 million in 2011 to thousands of nonprofit organizations and important causes across the United States.
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