Safe Kids Kansas

Preventing Accidental Injury.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 20, 2011

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

Injury Prevention Starts in Your Own Back Yard

Safe Kids Kansas offers lawn mower safety tips

Topeka, Kan. – During the summertime, parents often look forward to sharing the burden of yard work with their children.  However, lawn mowing can be extremely dangerous to children.  Whether your child is operating the mower or playing nearby, it is important to take precautions to avoid serious injury.

“It’s common to see young children helping the family with mowing tasks, or mowing yards to earn money during the summer months,” says Cherie Sage, State Director for Safe Kids Kansas. “But we also know that thousands of injuries associated with this piece of machinery are occurring every year.  We want parents and children to be aware of the hazards lawn mowers pose, and how to prevent injuries.”

Lawn Mowers

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the power lawn mower is one of the most dangerous tools around the home.  253,000 people were treated for lawn mower-related injuries in 2010, nearly 17,000 of them children under age 19, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Older children and adolescents were most often hurt while cutting lawns as chores or as a way to earn money.

Lawn mower injuries include deep cuts, loss of fingers and toes, broken and dislocated bones, burns, and eye and other injuries. Some injuries are very serious. Both users of mowers and those who are nearby can be hurt.

To prevent lawn mower injuries to children, the AAP and Safe Kids Kansas recommend the following:

In addition, keep lawn chemicals out of reach of young children, remember to apply sunscreen rated SPF 15 or higher to your child’s exposed skin 15 to 30 minutes before going out and reapply frequently, and make sure your child drinks plenty of water. A child who seems tired or achy should rest in the shade or go inside for a while. Get immediate medical help any time a child’s skin is hot to the touch (with or without perspiration) or if a child has a seizure or becomes disoriented in hot weather.

For more information about outdoor recreation safety, call 785-296-1223 or visit www.usa.safekids.org.

Safe Kids Kansas, Inc. is a nonprofit Coalition of over 70 statewide organizations and businesses dedicated to preventing accidental injuries to Kansas children ages 0-14. Local coalitions and chapters cover Allen, Anderson, Butler, Clay, Coffey, Dickinson, Doniphan, Douglas, Elk, Ellis, Finney, Geary, Harvey,  Johnson, Kiowa, Labette, Leavenworth, Marion, Marshall, McPherson, Mitchell, Montgomery, Pottawatomie, Riley, Saline, Sedgwick, Shawnee, Smith, and Sumner counties, as well as the city of Emporia and the Metro Kansas City Area (Wyandotte county and several Missouri counties.) Safe Kids Kansas a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations whose mission is to prevent accidental childhood injury. The lead agency for Safe Kids Kansas is the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Visit us at http://www.safekidskansas.org and on Facebook.