Presentation on theme: "Horticultural Business Safety Training Jesse LaPrade Extension Environmental and Safety Specialist The Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Auburn."— Presentation transcript:
Horticultural Business Safety Training Jesse LaPrade Extension Environmental and Safety Specialist The Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Auburn University
Rotary Mowers and Cutters According to the National Safety Council, lawnmower mishaps in the United States result in nearly 75,000 emergency room visits annually.
The three most frequent injuries involve: Injuries caused by contacting the blade. Keep hands and feet away from the moving blade! Injuries caused by flying objects thrown by the mower. Injuries caused by losing control of the mower.
Preventing Lawnmower Injuries Check all guards, shields, deflectors, and warning signs and be sure they are in place. Be sure that the mowing area is clear of all obstacles, including humans and pets. Be sure that all safety interlock systems are working properly. Disable the engine before servicing the blade (turn off the key and remove it or disconnect the spark plug wire).
Preventing Lawnmower Injuries If the cutting height is set by individual wheel adjustment, be sure the engine is not running when making the adjustment. Keep the mower in top operating condition and keep the blade sharp, not bent, cracked, or out of balance before operating it. Be careful when clearing a plugged chute. Always turn off the engine and use a stick or tool to unplug the discharge chute. A stopped blade is sharp and can cut you. Avoid mowing grass when wet to minimize chute plugging.
Preventing Thrown–Object Injuries Before you mow, check the lawn for objects that could be thrown. Work the area and pick up rocks, sticks, toys, bottles, etc., before starting the mower. Keep the mowing area clear of pets, children, and bystanders. Keep shields and deflectors that are designed to deflect objects downward in place and operating properly.
Personal Protective Equipment Protect feet and legs from thrown objects: Wear closed-toe, heavy-duty shoes or boots with good traction soles—no tennis shoes or sandals. Wear sturdy long pants, not shorts.
Preventing Loss-of-Control Injuries Get familiar with the controls and how the machine handles before starting the engine. Drive around the area to be mowed with the blade shut off to get the feel of a new machine before mowing.
Walk-Behind Mowers Special Considerations Use good work boots with good traction. Avoid mowing wet grass; a foot could slip into the mowing path. Mow across slopes as long as mower control can be maintained. Mow going forward to avoid pulling the mower back on your foot. Don’t mow steep slopes with any mower!
Tractors and Riding Mowers Use a proper ballast to maintain steering control. Set the tractor tires as wide as possible beyond the rotary cutter, if possible. Mow up and down slopes; keep the tractor in gear at all times to avoid “free wheeling.” Use extreme care when the grass is wet. Stay away from ditches and drop-offs, as far as the depth of the ditch.
Safety Improvements for Landscapes Round off corners and install a bed or planting. Fill in low spots and holes in landscapes. Remove a circle of grass around trees. Remove low-hanging tree limbs. Don’t mow steep slopes; put in a planting or appropriate ground cover.
Other Safety Concerns NO RIDERS Check out strange noises. All engines give off carbon monoxide; never run an engine in a confined space. Never refuel a hot mower, and shut off the engine before refueling. Avoid gasoline spills on the lawn as spills kill grass. Wipe up spills before restarting the engine and NO SMOKING while refueling.
Other Safety Concerns There should be NO unattended mowers. Shut off engine and remove the key or spark plug wire. Lower all hydraulic controls before leaving the machine. Be aware of the hot muffler and exhaust system when the engine has been run for a while.
Lawn-Grooming Equipment Safety The majority of all lawn-grooming equipment injuries result from: Poor operator protection (PPE) Thrown objects Contact with moving parts
Lawn-Grooming Equipment Personal protective equipment includes: Safety glasses Hearing protection Sturdy closed-toe shoes or work boots Long pants Long-sleeve shirt
Lawn-Grooming Equipment Other PPE (needed sometimes but not always). Dust mask Wide-brimmed hat Gloves
The Danger Zone is: A 50-foot radius of any lawn-grooming tool that uses spinning parts, such as: A line trimmer An edger A blower
Other Safety Concerns Refueling. Allow engine to cool before refueling. Hot Surfaces. Locate the muffler and other hot surfaces before starting and stay clear. Fire Prevention. Spark arresters must be used on outdoor power equipment in some states and areas. Be sure that you comply. Electric Shock. If equipment uses a house current, inspect all extension cords for cracks and wear. Plug tools into a ground fault interrupt protection circuit only.
Golf Course Equipment Wet, slippery conditions. Slips and falls are the #1 injury. Equipment rollover. See the utility tractor safety section to help prevent rollovers. Reel mowers. Stay clear of the cutting reel. Refuel at the end of each day to help reduce condensation in the fuel tank.
Safety in Transporting Outdoor Power Equipment The four most common types of equipment transport incidents involve: Losing control of the truck or tow vehicle. Losing equipment from the trailer. Losing the trailer. Loading and unloading mishaps.
The Right Equipment GVWR is gross vehicle weight rating and is the maximum weight of your vehicle and its load. DO NOT EXCEED THE LIMIT FOR THE TOW VEHICLE OR THE TRAILER.
The Right Equipment GCWR is gross combined weight rating and is the maximum load for the vehicle and its trailer and all contents. DO NOT EXCEED THE LIMIT FOR THE TOW VEHICLE AND THE TRAILER.
The Right Equipment Trailer tongue weight must be added to the GVWR of the tow vehicle. Tongue weight should be between 10 and 15 percent of the trailer and its load weight. Use safety chains on trailers. Trailer brakes may be necessary. Check with state vehicle authorities. Some states base need on GVWR. Proper trailer lighting: brake lights, turn signals, running lights, and license plate lights are needed on all trailers in Alabama.
Equipment Loading Safety When loading heavy equipment make sure your trailer is on a level surface. Wear a safety belt when loading and unloading heavy equipment. Use a spotter to make sure the wheels stay on the trailer. Tie equipment down securely with straps or chains, securing the front and rear of the machine. The operator’s manual will provide further instructions based on each individual machine’s characteristics, such as tie down points, etc. All items on the trailer must be secured to the trailer.
Other Equipment Transport Safety Concerns No passengers should ever be on the towed trailer or equipment. Check tire pressure. Heavy loads cause excessive tire wear if the tires are under-inflated. Lubricate the hitch ball to reduce wear. Secure a coupler lever to prevent unintentional opening. Use a hitch pin or padlock. Grease wheel bearings on trailers at the beginning and end of each season of use. Cover all SMV signs on equipment on the tow trailer.
Fuel Transport One gallon of gasoline has the explosive force of 83 pounds of dynamite. Use the proper approved containers for gasoline and diesel fuel—red for gasoline and green or yellow for diesel; heavy-duty metal is preferred. When filling a fuel can, place it flat on the ground or cement and never in the truck bed or trailer. Replace fuel caps and close vent holes before transporting the fuel. Follow all refueling guidelines for equipment at the work site.
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