Posted on: 18 April 2016
When your child reaches the point at which you believe that he or she is mature enough to begin mowing the lawn with a standard rotary mower, it's important to ease the adolescent into this activity while making safety a priority. While the child may be eager to take up the job as a way to earn some spending money, you need to be sure that he or she will see mowing the lawn as a serious job that requires full attention at all times. In addition to equipping your child with steel-toed boots, work gloves and hearing protection, here are a handful of safety lessons to make sure that you enforce. Remind your child that failing to handle the job with safety as a priority will mean an end of the work -- and of the pay that comes with it.
Push The Mower At All Times
It can sometimes be quicker to pull the mower while walking backward instead of taking the time to turn around and push the mower, but your child needs to know that pushing the mower is the safest way to proceed. It might seem overly simplistic to emphasize the importance of pushing the mower, but you need to do so to ensure your child doesn't take the shortcut of walking backward and pulling the machine. Standing behind the mower means that your child is looking in the direction of travel, which will allow him or her to quickly identify obstacles and stop the mower. Backing up while pulling the mower is unsafe because your child could easily trip and fall and pull the mower over his or her own foot.
Clean Blockages With A Tool
Cutting wet grass can lead to a blockage of grass beneath the lawnmower. Your child needs to know that dealing with this issue requires a safe approach. He or she shouldn't reach under the machine (even after it's turned off) and remove any grass clumps by hand. Instead, this job should be done with the handle of a rake or shovel. Further, the child should know that certain parts of the lawnmower, including the muffler, are hot enough to burn. Point out these various elements on the mower for your child.
Be Cognizant Of The Mower's Discharge Chute
It's ideal to have a collections bag attached to the mower so your child won't inadvertently run over a rock or stick and send it flying into your vehicle or even the sliding glass door of your home. If you don't have this attachment, make sure that your child is cognizant of the mower's discharge chute. He or she should position the machine so that grass clippings and other debris don't fly out toward anything that could be damaged -- and this includes pedestrians or motorists passing by your house.
You may be able to purchase a lawn mower with a collections bag attached at a company like Snappy's Outdoor Equipment Sales & Service LLC.