Release date: May 5, 1994
Release number: 94-071

Release Details

Children should not play on or around riding lawnmowers. This, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) which says that about 15 children are killed each year by riding lawnmowers.

"CPSC is examining current voluntary standards for riding lawnmowers to determine if mandatory action is necessary," said CPSC's Chairman Ann Brown.

Each year, about 25,300 people are injured and 75 people are killed in riding lawnmower, tractor and garden tractor accidents. One out of every five deaths involves a young child. CPSC says that most of the deaths occurred when the child fell off the mower and was run over, or when the child was in a moving mower's path.

A CPSC survey showed that about 55 percent of households with children under age 10 allow children to ride on lawn mowing equipment.

CPSC urges riding lawnmower and tractor users to follow the following safety precautions:

-Never take a child for a ride on a garden tractor or 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 off the mower 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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