Seattle Plastic Surgeon (and mother of three) Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder nags her children and you about lawn mower safety.
It is such a wonderful thing to get some yard work out of my offspring now that they are old enough to mow, rake, sweep, weed, water, trim, edge, poop scoop, etc. As much as I love the smell of newly mown grass and the thought of them working (instead of me), I worry. I worry about the lawn mower thus the little nag session each and every time one of my boys has been nagged into mowing the lawn.
Here is my list of lawn mower safety tips.
- Only children over 13 should mow a lawn.
- One person only should be on the lawn being mowed. That would be the person behind or on the mower.
- NO PETS unless it’s a rabbit you really wish you had never adopted.
- Always wear socks and heavy shoes and gloves.
- Always wear eye protection.
- Ear plugs okay but not no ipod listening. They need to hear you yell, “Watch out for the dog!”
- No mowing until the offspring has cooled down from his/her rage at having to actually perform agreed upon chores for agreed upon bennies. Rage and lawn mowers should never coexist.
- If the mower malfunctions, turn it off and don’t even think about flipping it over unless a knowledgeable and responsible adult is present.
- Leave sharpening to the experts. Oh, unless you work in a lawn mover sharpening shop, you are not an expert.
- No using the lawn mover for anything other than mowing the lawn. This calls for a cautionary (and I swear to God true) tale. Two patients in the same day present with nearly identical lawn mower injuries sustained while attempting to trim a hedge with a lawn mower. Patient #2 happen to see patient #1 (prior to his mishap) trimming his hedge with the lawn mower while Patient #2 was driving to get gas for his lawn mower and thought “Hey, what a great idea.” Not.
Stay tuned. One of these blogs I will tell you about my dad’s snowblower injury. His bloody glove is still nailed to the wall of his shop some 30 years later.
Thanks for reading. Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder