It is that time of year again – the grass and unfortunately the weeds are growing. Many of us will be heading outside to mow, weed, water and enjoy our yards, especially now during these extraordinary times it feels good to be able to get outside. While most of the following is good old fashioned common sense, it never hurts to have a bit of a reminder. Here are a few tips to keep you safe as you go about yard maintenance.
Before Heading Out:
- Make sure you are wearing appropriate clothing for the weather and chores you have planned. i.e. closed toe shoes if mowing, long pants and long sleeves if working in brush or wooded area (to avoid tick, chigger and other insect bites).
- Do not forget sunscreen and/or bug spray.
- Consider doing some stretches or warm up exercises to prevent muscle strain and injury.
Before Starting Work:
- If using any power tool, make sure it is in good working order and ready to be used plus read all instructions and safety rules regarding the tool or tools you are using.
- It is always a good idea to wear safety goggles while using power tools.
- Consider hearing protection as well, but you do not want to completely block out any ambient or background sounds.
- Again make sure you are wearing appropriate attire, you do not want your clothing getting caught in any machinery and possibly causing you injury, or slipping and falling into a lawn mower because you are wearing sandals or are barefoot.
- Make sure any children or pets are not in the area you plan to work in.
- Take your time and pace yourself. Rushing can cause accidents and injuries.
- Stay hydrated!!
- Always be aware of what is going on in your surroundings, such as the neighbor’s children playing with their dog next door, as they may stray into your work area.
- Be on the lookout for any insect nests as well. If you are allergic to insect bites you will want to make sure you have your Epi pen with you.
- Clean up any debris piles as they can be a hazard and a hiding place for animals and insects.
- Clean your tools so they will be in good working order the next time you want to use them.
- Store all tools and equipment.
For more information visit https://safety.lovetoknow.com/personal-safety-protection/yard-work-safety. Another great source on being safe in your yard is the Backyard Safety Checklist at the Safewise website https://www.safewise.com/blog/the-complete-backyard-safety-checklist/. So please enjoy the outdoors and be safe.