At First Coast Foot & Ankle Clinic, we try to help patients be proactive about podiatric health. One simple way to do this is by taking precautions to avoid injuries to the toes, feet, and ankles. Each year tens of thousands of people end up in the emergency room as the result of power mower injuries. Below are some common scenarios that you can control and thereby prevent serious damage to your feet.
You’re relaxing in the backyard in shorts, t-shirt, and flip flops. Suddenly clouds begin to move in, and you decide you better do a quick mow before it rains. You hurry to start the mower and get it done.
With blades that whirl at 3,000 rotations a minute with the kinetic energy equivalent to a .357 handgun, it’s easy to see that bare feet are no match for mowers. Toe amputations and cuts deep enough to sever tendons can occur if your feet are exposed. Always wear work boots or heavy shoes when mowing, just in case your foot accidentally comes in contact with the blade.
The riding mower looks like so much fun! “Please dad, give me a ride,” says your little daughter.
Children under the age of 14 are one of the age groups with the highest number of mowing accidents. You may think that you can keep your child safe on the mower but little legs and feet getting on and off the machine can easily slip under the mowing deck and sustain very serious injuries. You can further help prevent mower accidents to children by establishing firm rules about staying off the lawn and not allowing your children to approach when the mower is turned on.
When you moved the mower before turning it on you accidentally nick your ankle with the blade. It’s just a small cut; you can deal with it when you finish the lawn.
Mower blades are very dirty. Any cut in the skin will allow bacteria and grime to enter your body. It’s important that you stop and clean out the wound immediately. Apply antibiotic ointment and a bandage before going back out. If a cut becomes infected or doesn’t seem to be healing quickly, contact our Jacksonville office (904-739-9129) so that our podiatrists Dr. Vimal A. Reddy and Dr. Jeffrey Brimmer can take a look at your foot and evaluate the injury.
The lawn is still wet from last night’s rain, but you’ve got company coming over this afternoon and want it to look good.
Wet lawns make for slippery conditions—one of the prime causes of mower accidents. Avoid pulling a running mower backward too and mow steep hills slowly back and forth, not up and down.
You only get two feet—don’t risk them on something as mundane as mowing the lawn!