Backyard Safety for the Summer
June 30, 2010 | Premises Liability
When the weather warms up, the back yard can either become a haven where you spend time with your family enjoying the outdoors, or it can become a health hazard, lying in wait to injure your children and pets. You are the deciding factor. Take steps to keep your back yard safe this summer.
Put Tools Away
After doing yard work, the simplest way to prevent injuries is to put everything away. Many of the tools used for yard work are made for cutting, which means they have sharp edges and points. You may set a pair of clippers down in the grass, and forget about them when you go inside. Kids are curious, and the first thing they’re going do when they find those clippers is pick them up and play with them. They could also step on them in sandals or worse, bare feet, and end up cutting themselves. Always put yard tools away immediately after finishing with them. This is especially important when it comes to the lawnmower. Never leave that unattended. It only takes a few seconds for an ambitious child to start it, and be injured by it. Also remember a riding lawnmower is a powerful tool, not a fun ride. If you have one, don’t let your kids ride on your lap while you’re mowing. They can fall off and be severely injured.
Keep the Pool Deck Clean
When kids get in the pool, there’s a lot of splashing, resulting in a lot of water ending up on the deck. You may think it will just dry up in the sun, so you don’t really need to worry about it. This is true, for the most part. But if you live in an older home, and everything has had several years to settle, the concrete around the pool may not be completely level. There may be spots where water collects and sits longer. Sure, the pool water is probably chlorinated, but water will also collect in those spots when it rains, and if it’s left to sit, especially in a shaded area, algae may begin to grow. Other than being unsightly, algae is also very slippery. Leaving it to proliferate will only invite slip and fall accidents. When you maintain the pool, remember to clean the entire area around it.
Use Minimal Chemicals
Few yards are without pests. Ants will make themselves at home in the grass, wasps may build nests in your home’s eaves, and in the evenings, mosquitoes come out in force. In addition, you may work hard to keep your lawn green, and the weeds to a minimum. To control all of these factors in your yard, you may resort to using chemicals. While effective, insecticides, fertilizers, and herbicides are toxic to humans and other animals. Follow the instructions on these products carefully. For example, don’t allow your kids or pets to walk on the grass until anything you’ve sprayed on it has dried completely. Also, store all these chemicals in a garage or shed with a locking door to keep young kids from getting into them. The best option is to try using natural alternatives to chemicals. Sometimes a simple mixture of soap and water is enough to keep pests off of flowering plants. Search the Internet for safe, natural methods of pest control.
Don’t let your summer be ruined by illness or injury that can be easily prevented with just a little common sense.