Backyard Safety

TGIF! If the weather’s nice I’m hoping to get a little yard work done this weekend. I just bought a house and there’s a whole vegetable garden and flower garden to plant.

The key to properly enjoying the backyard, however, is to make sure that you do it properly and, in this case, safely. Keep the following tips in mind (or print them out and post them inside the tool shed to remind you every time you go out to do some yard work) in order to make sure that your trip to the backyard doesn’t end up being a trip to the hospital.

  • Mowing the lawn
    • Make sure that the lawnmower is properly tuned up and in good working order.
    • Keep children and pets away while the lawnmower is in use.
    • Do a quick visual of the lawn and pick up anything (sticks, stones, tools, toys, etc…) that could get sucked into the lawnmower, shoot out the other end and damage the blade or worse, you!
    • Wear safety goggles or safety glasses as well as ear plugs or ear muffs
    • Make sure that the mower is turned off before you try to do any work on it or reach under it for any reason whatsoever
    • Only add gas to a mower that is turned off and has cooled down
  • Other Tools
    • Make sure that you know how to use the tool. Read all the instructions, especially the safety cautions listed with the tool.
    • Make sure that you power tools are equipped with the proper safety features (i.e. an anti-kickback chain on a chainsaw)
    • Make sure that all the tools are properly sharpened. You are far more likely to get hurt from a dull tool than one that is properly maintained
    • Always put them away where children can’t get to them after you have finished with them
  • Pesticides, fertilizers and chemicals
    • Read all the labels and know the health hazards associated with the products that you use on your lawn or garden
    • Read the MSDS sheets to make sure that you are wearing the proper protection equipment
    • Keep all these products locked up and away from children
    • Do not mix products unless you know that it is safe to do so. Just because product A is good for you flowers and product B is good as well does not mean that A + B is twice as good. It might instead be extremely dangerous.

Have fun in your yard this weekend and take care to do so safely. See you back here on Monday!