Here are some facts about lawn mower safety that may surprise you: lawn mowers produce three times the kinetic energy of a .357 handgun, with blades that spin at 3,000 revolutions per minute. It’s no wonder that more than 37,000 Americans are the victim of a power mower accident every year. Many of these are foot and toe injuries. At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center, we want to help our patients keep their feet safe and prevent mower injuries. Below are our top tips:
- Wear the right shoes. Sneakers and sandals will not protect your feet if they come in contact with a mower blade. Work boots or another heavy shoe are the right choice. And, although it seems obvious, mowing barefoot is not a good idea (and yet each year there are patients in the emergency room with injuries because of this!)
- Never mow your lawn right after it rains. Even if it is inconvenient, don’t take a chance of your mowing slipping and losing control of it on slippery, wet grass.
- Keep children away. The two age groups most likely to suffer power mower accidents are children under the age of 14 and adults over 44. No matter how much they beg, do not let children ride in your lap while you are mowing. Also, be sure your children know not to approach you while the mower is running. The noise of the machine makes it difficult to detect that children are nearby.
- Treat any and all injuries immediately. Of course, in case of a major injury you will go to the emergency room. Even more minor injuries, however, such as a cut or a twisted ankle getting on or off the mower needs prompt treatment. If you have injured yourself mowing in a non-emergent way, call our Long Beach office to make an appointment at: (562) 420-9800. Our podiatrists, Victoria M. Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas will conduct a complete examine of your feet and determine the best course of treatment for your injury. Remember that lawn mower blades are dirty, which creates a higher risk of an infection developing in a cut from a mower blade. Look for signs of infection: pus, redness or warmth around the injured area and fever. Report these to us immediately.