Comprehensive Children's Injury Center
Injury Prevention Tips | Lawnmower Safety

Tips for Keeping Children Safe Around Lawnmowers

The Comprehensive Children’s Injury Center (CCIC) provides the following lawnmower safety tips to help parents become better informed on injury prevention tips.

Why is lawn mower safety so important?

  • Lawn mower injuries can:
    • cause life changing injuries, both physical and emotional
    • be very painful and disfiguring
  • Following safety guidelines can save lives.

How common are lawn mower injuries?

Approximately 80,000 lawn mower accidents happen annually in the United States.

Common causes of lawn mower injuries:

  • Contact with rotating blade
  • Being hit by flying objects
  • Overturning
  • Ride-on mowers running over person

Injury prevention tips:

  • Do not let children less than 12 years old operate any lawn mower.  For ride-on mowers, children should be at least 16 years old.
  • Never have passengers on ride-on mowers.
  • Keep young children at a safe distance from the area you are mowing.
  • Pick up stones, toys and debris from the lawn to prevent injuries from flying objects.
  • Use a mower with a control that stops it from moving forward if the handle is released.
  • Never pull backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary - carefully look for others behind you when you do.
  • Always wear sturdy shoes while mowing - not sandals.
  • Always wear eye and hearing protection.

What kind of injury can happen?

  • Dislocated bones
  • Deep cuts
  • Arm, leg or genital amputation
  • Missing fingers or toes
  • Burns
  • Eye injuries

Treatment of lawn mower injuries:

  • Often requires a team of specialized doctors
  • Child may need multiple surgeries to repair the injury
  • May need therapy to help regain function to injured limb