Texas Living

Help Teens Stay Safe When Mowing Lawns

By James Mayfield 5.26.14

We all love grass so green you just want to sink your feet into it. And for kids and teens, the neighborhood’s quest for the perfect summer lawn means the perfect opportunity for a summer job.

However, lawn work presents some dangers to be wary of. Help keep your little lawn mowers safe with the following tips.


Take a moment to walk the yard with your teenager and explain any obstacles to avoid or areas that could be particularly tricky. Remove any tripping hazards such as toys, water hoses, and other large items, and point out where your power lines are located and where water sprinkler heads are buried.

Uninvited Guests

If you’ve lived in Texas for a while, you’re probably all too familiar with the painful bite of the fire ant. Fire ant mounds pop up quickly and spread rapidly. Colonies or mounds can hold up to 200,000 ants that build underground tunnel systems, which can stretch up to 25 feet from the mound. Before your teen performs the first cut of the season, think about treating your lawn, and look for dangerous mounds.


It’s not unusual in Texas to have several 100-degree days in a row during summer. Make sure your junior landscaper wears sunscreen and has plenty of water and replenishes his or her fluids frequently to stay cool. It’s also best to mow the lawn when it is dry, generally in the late afternoon and evening.


Protective eyewear or shatter-resistant sunglasses are a must in case a piece of debris flies out from under the mower. Even though it sounds like a tough proposition in sweltering heat, it’s also a good idea to wear long sleeves, long pants, and closed-toe shoes to protect from anything the blades may fling.


They may know the rule about cutting no more than one-third of the blade length and keeping grass around 3 inches tall. But you should also teach the importance of bagging clippings — it prevents them from turning into tinder under a blazing hot sun.

Before any hot summer work, review what to do in heat emergencies.

© 2014 Texas Farm Bureau Insurance