Autumn Yard Work Hazards and How to Avoid Them

With fall finally here, it's time to get outside and do some yard work. Trees need to be trimmed, lawns need to be mowed, and leaves need to be raked -- staying safe while doing these physical tasks is important any time of year. You might break a sweat, but you shouldn’t break an ankle. Yard work poses the risk of injury and it's important to go about it safely. So let's take a look at a few basic safety tips to follow when you're getting your autumn yard work done.

What are some common causes of yard work injuries?

  • Tools and equipment

  • Unstable ladders 

  • Poisonous plants, sharp branches and rough vegetation

While it may not seem like the most dangerous activity to spruce up your yard, there are some risks of injury to keep in mind. For starters, incorrectly using power tools and equipment such as lawnmowers, weed whackers and chainsaws can result in serious injuries. Additionally, with common autumn tasks being to clean out the gutters and remove dead tree branches, many people are up on ladders. It can be all too easy to lose your footing on an unstable ladder, which can result in a nasty fall.

And don't forget about the dangers of working with plants -- if you're one of the 85% of Americans who are allergic to poison ivy, you should know what to watch out for when working in areas of brush or invasive weeds. 

How to get your autumn work done safely

So how can you stay safe and avoid having to visit an urgent care clinic while getting your yard work done? Those gutters won’t clean themselves! 

ladder safety tip - grab a buddyFor starters, to avoid sustaining injuries using these yard tools, make sure to properly read and follow all instructions and always be aware of your surroundings. In doing this, you can ensure that you're using the equipment as safely as possible. Additionally, you should never go up on a ladder alone -- always make sure someone is there to hold it steady for you. The buddy system is the best way to go. 

And both lightweight and long clothing are ideal for outdoor work, as it can protect you from scratches, bugs and sunburn. Overall, when you're doing your autumn yard work, make sure you're using your best judgment and listening to your body to avoid an injury. And if you do get hurt with a minor injury, make sure to visit one of our 13 neighborhood Immediate Clinics sooner rather than later. Your nearby Immediate Clinic is open from 8 am to 8 pm every day, including weekends. 

As you can see, there are several ways to get injured doing yard work. So keep these safety tips in mind to ensure your yard work doesn't only get done, but that it gets done safely.

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