It’s that time of year when many Chicago-area residents must take out the lawnmower and cut their grass regularly. We rely on functional lawnmowers to get the job done, and usually, they do, but what happens when a lawnmower malfunctions?
Lawnmowers can have mechanical defects, even when purchased brand new. These defects often result in injuries to either a lawnmower operator or a bystander.
Children are especially at a high risk of sustaining serious and life-threatening injuries. In addition, an accident involving a lawnmower could injure a person simply walking by.
How serious are lawnmower-related injuries?
Common lawnmower-related injuries include:
- Cuts or lacerations – especially on the hands, feet, ankles, and shins
- Burns from contact with a hot engine or fire due to combustion
- Puncture wounds or bruises caused by objects being projected by the blade
- Bone fractures or amputations from contact with the blade
- Serious injuries can also occur when the blade detaches and is projected
How lawnmower accidents can be prevented
In order to reduce the likelihood of someone getting hurt, it’s important that lawnmower operators and owners take the following steps:
- Always read the instruction manual before using
- Keep your mower in good condition by frequently inspecting it and fixing defects
- Ensure that hot or sharp parts are covered
- Remove rocks, toys, sticks, and other debris from the yard that could be projected before operating a mower
- Wear eye protection, ear protection, gloves, long pants, and closed-toed shoes
- Only operate a mower while sober
- Avoid tampering with or removing safety components
- Never reach into a mower to remove grass, as the blade could still be spinning when a mower is turned off
- Avoid lifting a mower from the bottom when moving it
- Avoid cutting damp or wet grass
- Don’t allow children under age 12 to use a push mower
- Don’t allow children under 16 to use a riding mower
- Don’t allow children to be on the lawn while operating a mower
- Don’t allow passengers on a riding mower
- Only pull a mower backward when necessary
Who is responsible for a lawnmower accident?
There are a number of reasons a lawnmower accident can occur. If you’ve been injured, it’s important that you discuss your matter with an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. The attorneys at Coplan + Crane will investigate your accident and identify responsible parties, including:
- The lawnmower owner/operator: If you were a bystander, your injuries may have been caused by an owner/operator’s failure to properly maintain a mower or remove debris from the grass. If a landscaping company was involved, they may be held accountable.
- The manufacturer: Whether you were an owner/operator or bystander, your injuries may have been caused by a manufacturing defect, like a loose blade, unprotected hazard, or fire hazard.
No matter how complex your claim may be, our legal team has the knowledge and courtroom experience to help maximize your compensation. Contact our firm today to find out how we can help.