Lawn Mower Safety Tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics

​Lawn Mower Safety Tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics

Keep your family safe around lawn mowers by following these tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).  Please feel free to use them in any print or broadcast story, with appropriate attribution of source.

  • Only use a mower with a control that stops the mower blade from moving if the handle is let go.

  • Children younger than 16 years should not be allowed to use ride-on mowers. Children younger than 12 years should not use walk-behind mowers.

  • Make sure that sturdy shoes are worn while mowing. No bare feet, open-toed shoes or flip flops.

  • Prevent injuries from flying objects, such as stones or toys, by picking up objects from the lawn before mowing begins. Have anyone who uses a mower wear hearing and eye protection.

  • Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you mow in reverse.

  • Always turn off the mower and wait for the blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, or crossing gravel paths, roads, or other areas.

  • Do not allow children to ride as passengers on ride-on mowers.

  • Keep children out of the yard while mowing.

  • Only use lawn power equipment with adequate daylight, not at twilight.

  • Drive up and down slopes, not across to prevent mower rollover.

  • Keep guards, shields, switches, and safety devices in proper working order at all times.

  • If children must be in the vicinity of running lawnmowers, they should wear polycarbonate protective eye wear at all times.

  • Lawn mower injuries to children are often extremely traumatic and can include amputation, death and emotional distress that can last a lifetime.

Also see the AAP Voices blog "Children and Lawn Mowers Often a Tragic Combination" for Dr Dale Jarka's personal experiences with lawn mowers and children.

© American Academy of Pediatrics, 2018