Pay Attention and Use Common Sense
Though snowthrowers (and other power equipment) do pose a hazard when used
improperly, the potential for injury can be greatly reduced by following some common sense rules and by
being aware of possible risks.
When starting your snowthrower, be sure that the drive system is in "Neutral" and that the auger is NOT engaged.
Avoid wearing loose clothing and secure extra-long hair safely under a warm hat or cap.
Should your snowthrower intake or discharge chute become clogged, never attempt to clear out the clog with the engine running or the impeller turning. Never! Shut the snowthrower off, wait for any moving parts to stop, remove the spark plug wire, and use a stick or broom handle to clear out the chute. After the chute is cleared, remove the stick, replace the spark plug wire and restart the machine.
If you are using an electric-powered snowthrower, pay careful attention to where the power cord is at all times. Running over the cord could lead to serious injury from electric shock.
Never leave the snowthrower unattended while it's running. If you are going to be away from the controls for more any length of time shut the snowthrower off.
When possible, plan your snowthrowing for daylight hours when visibility and light are the best. When operating the snowthrower during dusk, evening, or in low-visibility conditions, use extra caution to avoid accidents. Many snowthrowers come with or can be fitted with headlights to provide extra lighting.
Do not wear earphones or listen to music when snowblowing. If you choose to wear ear protection to reduce the noise of your snowthrower, stay alert and keep your eyes open. You may not be able to hear a car horn or someone shouting.
Never operate your snowthrower while under the influence of alcohol, powerful medication, or drugs or if you're feeling tired and drowsy. Even over-the-counter cold & flu medicines may impair your ability to safely operate your snowthrower. If you're impaired, don't drive anything more powerful than a shovel!
Only you can be the one to prevent injuries caused by operator error or mistake.
Use your head, take your time, and follow the guidelines above and elsewhere on this site.
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