Health Watch -- Yard Work: More Mower Safety

 Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we're talking about staying safe while working in the yard. Lawn mowers can be dangerous when they're not used properly. The whirling blades can cut fingers, toes and feet, and the blades can also send projectiles flying.

Dr. Maureen Finnegan, an orthopaedic surgeon at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, says mowing injuries can be prevented if you focus on what you're doing and use common sense. When you mow, wear sturdy shoes with grip soles — not flip flops. Keep bystanders — especially children — away from the mowing area. Let blades come to a stop before working on the mower, and use a stick instead of your fingers to clear debris from the blades. Check the yard before you mow for things like rocks and sticks that could be thrown by the blades. If you do accidentally sever a finger or toe, cleanse the body part with saline water, wrap it in gauze, put it in a waterproof bag, then put the bag over ice and go to an emergency room right away.


May 2006

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