With winter weather (especially in Iowa!) always comes a great deal of snow…and snow clean up. The use of snow blowers has fortunately made the dreadful task quite easier though! However, it’s important to keep safety in mind when using your snow blower. There are approximately 5,740 hospital emergency room injuries every year caused by snow blowers; and since 1992, 19 deaths have been reported from using snow blowers. Snow blowers are an extremely helpful tool during the winter, but can also be very dangerous.
Primary Injury Cause:
The operator attempts to clean the clogged exit chute of the snow blower with his/her hands while the machine is off but the blades are still rotating.
If Your Snow Blower Jams:
- Turn it OFF!
- Disengage the clutch
- Wait fifteen seconds after shutting the machine off to allow the impeller blades to stop rotating
- ALWAYS use a stick of broom handle to clear impacted snow
- DO NOT REMOVE the safety devices on the machine
- Keep your hands and feet away from all moving parts
Three Snow Blower Safety Tips:
- It may be frigid outside, but be patient when waiting for the parts to stop moving when you turn the snow blower off to unclog snow or another object from it. Never use your hand to unclog a snow blower!
- Dress properly for the job. Wear protective winter clothing and footwear with a lot of traction. Avoid loose fitting clothing that could get caught in moving parts and be careful of long hair. Lastly, wear ear plugs or other ear protection – snow blowers are loud!
- Remove all obstacles (debris, door mats, toys, decorations) the snow blower might come in contact with, as they may cause injury or damage to the snow blower.
Remember to keep these safety tips in mind next time you go outside to use your snow blower. If you have any questions or would like to speak to one of our agents about insurance coverage for any of your winter vehicles/devices, call Knapp Tedesco Insurance today at 515-232-7060 or visit us online at http://www.knapptedesco.com/.