Operating Lawn Tractors Safely

 


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Lawn tractors are a godsend for gardeners maintaining a large garden. They offer great flexibility, efficiency and allow you to save precious time by making light work of taking care of a big plot. They are a reliable piece of equipment that is easy to operate, fun to drive, fast and reliable. While they are a great tool there is no doubt that they can also be hazardous to operate if not operated in a safe manner.

The first concern of every lawn tractor owner should be safe operation. It is easy to feel invincible when perched atop one of those mean machines, which is why you should be all the more aware of the risks involved. Lawn tractors are powerful pieces of kit that react to the user’s commands instantly. This means that things can go very wrong very quickly and annual statistics show a constant stream of accidents and operator injuries due to unsafe use of the machine.

While operating your lawn tractor you should always think about the following elements:

  • First of all do not start the engine until you have cleared the area where you need to work of any lose debris. This really is key as even small stones, wood and metallic pieces can become deadly projectiles for anyone in the vicinity if coming out the side of the tractor at speed.
  • Do not underestimate the importance of safety gear: goggles, safety shoes and thick gloves are all design to protect you from the hazards that come with operating a tractor.
  • Never ever remove the tractor’s safety shields as you never know when they will be needed.

    Do Not Get Too Confident

    The reality is that you may be a very experienced tractor driver. It is very dangerous to become complacent and start trusting the machine because of finely honed skills and years of careful operation. Do not let your guard down, at any point in time: your remaining safe while operating the lawn tractor depends on it.

    As previously detailed mowing an area that hasn’t been cleared is one of the most usual slip-ups but unfortunately you will have little choice in the matter if the tractor blades are exposed. With these particular designs it is worth considering the installation of blade guards to diminish the cutting risks.

    You also need to pay extra care when operating the tractor on a slope as there is more risk of the machine toppling over. While most current designs feature a more even weight distribution to minimize this, there is still a risk of sustaining nasty injuries should the blades fall onto you when the tractor tips over.

    When operating machinery, especially when there are known risks associated with it, it pays to be prepared for any eventuality. The better your preparation, the lesser the risk of being in a serious accident. Overlooking safety details, such as wearing adequate protective gear, can leave you exposed to risks not worth taking. Operating a tractor safely is not a game and you should therefore take all preparation very seriously.

    Andrew Caxton is a journalist who has written more articles and newsletters on this subject for http://www.lawn-mowers-and-garden-tractors.com .

    You can find more information and resources on lawn tractors at his website.

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