Release date: May 17, 1993
Release number: 93-069

Release Details

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) today reminded parents and others who use riding lawnmowers and garden tractors to keep children away from and off of the vehicles.

According to CPSC, an estimated 25,300 people are injured and 75 people are killed each year in riding lawnmower, lawn tractor, and garden tractor accidents.

One out of every five of the deaths involves a young child. These deaths most often occur when the child falls off the mower and is run over, or when the child falls into a moving mower's path.

A government survey shows that about 55 percent of households with children under age 10 allow children to ride on lawn mowing equipment. CPSC advises parents to prohibit children from riding on riding mowers and garden tractors, and from playing in the area where machines are being used.

"If parents and others using riding mowers and garden tractors take a few simple precautions, these deaths could be greatly reduced or even eliminated," said CPSC's Chairman Jacqueline Jones-Smith.

CPSC and equipment manufacturers urge riding lawnmower and tractor users and owners to follow these safety precautions:

-Never take a child for a ride on a garden tractor or a riding mower.

-Keep children indoors and supervised at all times when any outdoor power equipment is being used. Young children move quickly and are attracted to mowers and mowing activity, especially if they have been given rides on mowers before.

-Never assume children will remain where you last saw them. Be alert and turn the mower off if children enter the mowing area. Use extra care when backing up or when approaching corners, shrubs, and trees.

-Never allow a child to operate a riding mower or garden tractor, even if the child is supervised.

-Clear the mowing area of objects such as rocks, toys, wires, etc. These items could be picked up and thrown by the blade.

CPSC is issuing this warning as part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with the estimated 28.6 million injuries and 21,700 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jurisdiction.

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