Spring is the best time of the year to spend time outside and enjoy the fresh air while relaxing after a hard week of work and stress. If you’re planning to be outdoors this season, there are a few outdoor spring safety tips to keep in mind, though, to ensure your time is worry- and risk-free. Being outside is awesome, but like everything else in life, nothing is without its pros and cons, and the cons can be quite dangerous when it comes to Mother Nature.
But don’t worry too much, if you read this article and make your own list of outdoor spring safety tips after learning from the advice shared here, you’ll be just fine and can enjoy the good weather as much as you want!
1. Dress Properly
First and foremost on our list of outdoor spring safety tips, we have to address how you dress when you’re outside. Although you’ll probably want to wear light clothing so you don’t sweat too much, it’s important to wear protective gear. If you’re going to be working in your garden, for example, you should wear gardening gloves and boots instead of sandals so your feet are protected from bugs. You should also wear safety glasses or goggles to protect your eyes while you’re working in your yard. If you’re just chilling outside, a wide-brimmed hat and good sunglasses are important.
2. Inspect and Clean Equipment
One of the most important outdoor safety spring tips involves looking after your equipment. If you’re an outdoorsy person, chances are you’re taking really good care of your yard and home’s exterior. With that said, it’s important that you take just as good care of your equipment and clean it regularly. You should also inspect it for missing or damaged parts so you don’t use a faulty machine or tool and get hurt. Make sure that any tools with blades you use are sharpened because dull blades are far more dangerous than well-kept ones.
Bonus Tip: Never put ‘old’ gas in your outdoor power equipment—this will lead to unwanted damage to the internal parts.
3. Protect Your Hearing
If you’re going to be working with machinery in your yard, it’s important that you take care of yourself and protect your hearing. If there are any outdoor spring safety tips you should never ignore, this is one of them. You can seriously damage your hearing if you don’t take precautions when using loud power tools and equipment. Invest in several pairs of good earplugs or earmuffs and always use them. When not using the protective gear, put it away in easy-to-find locations. If your children want to join you for your outdoor projects, make sure you take care of their ears as well.
4. Keep Emergency Care in Mind
Unfortunately, accidents can happen at any time and to anyone, so preparing for them can ensure you react appropriately and bring a situation under control quite easily. One of the most important outdoor spring safety tips when it comes to emergency care is having a fully stocked and well-prepared first aid kit. Make sure you have everything you’ll need if someone gets hurt outside. Have medicine for insect stings and bites as well, and keep the kit where anyone can easily find it. Also, it’s a good idea to invest in bug spray so you can avoid most of the pesky critters that could pose a threat to you and your family.
5. Know Your Equipment
Making sure your yard is ready for all the spring fun you and your loved ones desire requires some planning. You’ll need to mow the lawn, trim all the bushes, hire a lawn hydroseed service to get a beautiful, green lawn, and maybe even cut down some of the trees that could be in the way of your planned adventures.
In addition to finding the best tree fellers that offer the lowest stump grinding cost and won’t ask a fortune to remove trees or stumps, you also need to know your own equipment like the back of your hand. Make sure you read the owner’s manuals of all your tools and equipment so you’re using them correctly and not risking injuries.
6. Watch Your Children
Although it can be tempting to find affordable sprinkler system installations and let your children play in the water without your supervision, that’s a bad idea. Not only would you be wasting water (unless you’re actually watering your lawn), but leaving your kids unattended can be risky. Also, if you want to rope your kids in and get their help with yard-related chores, give them age-appropriate tasks. Don’t expect a young child to know how to safely operate a lawnmower, for example. And never allow your kids to go for ‘rides’ on a riding mower—it’s a recipe for disaster.
7. Check Your Extension Cords
Extension cords can be a lifesaver if you’re busy outside and need to power your tools. However, this outdoor spring safety tips checklist expects you to take care when using these ‘lifesavers’. For example, if you’re busy with roof repair and need to use a power tool on the roof, you need a reliable cord that isn’t a safety hazard. Make sure your cords don’t have any cracks. If there are any, properly seal them with electrical tape and replace them as quickly as possible. Regularly check your extension cords for frayed wires and never, ever, run them through puddles or use them in wet areas.
8. Make Your Yard Safe
Another important item on our outdoor spring safety tips checklist involves your entire yard. You need to be certain that there are no hidden dangers or areas where you or your children and other family members can get hurt. While trees are awesome because they offer shade and make your yard look beautiful. However, if the branches have the potential to fall or damage your home, you should consider tree removal.
The last thing you want is to get emergency tree work done when a storm has blown a tree right into your home or strong winds cause loose branches to fall on a person. You should also make your yard safe by ensuring you’re not causing potential risks. Always put your garden tools and other equipment away after using them and don’t leave items like fertilizer or weed killer where children and pets can find them.
9. Don’t Dig Without Approval
Enhancing your yard this spring is a good idea, and we completely encourage it, but be careful when you do. If you’re planning enhancements like installing landscape stone, you may want to be sure you’re allowed to dig holes before you get excited. You should always check with your local utility companies before you start digging to ensure there aren’t any sewer, gas, or electrical lines you could damage or break. This can be very dangerous and expensive to deal with.
10. Be Conscious of Electric Tools
One of the most important outdoor spring safety tips we want to share with you is focused on being safe around electricity. You probably know this already, but it’s so important that it warrants mention regardless. Don’t ever leave any electrical tools plugged in if you’re not using them, even if you’re only stepping away for a minute. Ensure the equipment is in the ‘off’ position before you plug it in so you don’t accidentally turn it on and get hurt, and teach your children about safety around these types of tools.
11. Know Toxic Plants
When spending a lot of time outdoors, you’ll start to learn that there are some plants that are completely fine and make your yard look beautiful, and some that don’t belong and are actually toxic. If you have children or pets, it’s important that you know which plants in your yard pose a danger, so you can get rid of them immediately. Learn how to identify plants like sumac, oak, and poison ivy, and teach your family members so they’re always careful as well.
12. Work Smart
Your yard is meant to be your natural sanctuary, but if you don’t work smart, it can be a hazardous place with lots of dangers lurking around. Always work smart when you’re outside, and don’t forget that life is fragile—it just takes one mistake to change your life forever, or even end it. Never work with power tools under the influence of alcohol (or medication/drugs), keep your yard safe, and know the dangers of plants, swimming pools, insects, and any other outdoor risks. If there are steep hills or holes in your yard, be sure to deal with them properly.
13. Prevent Injury
This point ties in with the previous one—work smart when you’re spending time outdoors. You may feel that you’re fit and in good physical condition, so you don’t need to stretch or warm up before starting to work in your garden. That’s not true, though. Anyone can prevent injuries if they take a few moments to ensure their muscles and bodies are ready for the tasks they’re taking on outside, whether it’s something as simple as raking the lawn or more complicated work like outdoor lighting installation. What good is making your yard look awesome if you get hurt doing so?
14. Lift Properly
Working in your yard entails many different things. You could be busy seeding your lawn one day, watering your plants the next, and installing a new stone statue the next. Whatever you get up to, make sure you’re lifting heavy items properly. Much like the two previous points discussed, it’s important to lift items the right way so you don’t get hurt while spending time in your yard this spring. When picking up anything, bend from your hips and knees, not your back. And if possible, avoid walking around with heavy items, rather use a wheelbarrow or cart.
15. Stay Hydrated
No matter what you’re doing outside, make sure that you (and your family and friends) stay hydrated this spring. It’s easy to mistake dehydration for hunger, so always have cool drinks and ice nearby so you don’t have to worry about it. Whether you’re just enjoying your lovely yard or doing yard work to make your yard look stunning in time for summer, always stay hydrated and don’t ignore dehydration signs like lightheadedness and headaches.
16. Wear Sunscreen
You may not think that sunscreen is necessary every time you’re outside, but UV rays can be dangerous no matter how long you’re exposed, how old you are, or what type of skin you have. If you’re spending more than a few minutes outside, put on sunscreen and protect yourself. Whether you’re just mowing the lawn or installing driveway paving, have your sunscreen ready. You should never be deceived by cloudy weather either; the rays aren’t stopped by a few clouds.
17. Plan for Bug Bites
One of our last outdoor spring safety tips is really important and warrants being mentioned more than once. We’ve discussed the importance of being prepared for bug bites, and it really is so important to be ready. Some bug bites can be worse than others, and you never know when an allergic reaction is going to happen. Always have your first aid kit prepared, know the signs of allergic reactions, know how to identify spider bites and have emergency numbers where you can easily find them.
18. Pay Attention
Last, but not least, we want to remind you to pay attention when you’re outside. The point is to have fun in your yard, but your safety is never guaranteed, so always pay attention to your surroundings. You can do everything in your power to ensure the safety of your family by keeping your yard secure and risk-free, but life has a tendency to make unexpected things happen, so don’t let down your guard too easily.
There are few things as rewarding as being outside with your loved ones, and if you take to heart the outdoor spring safety tips we gathered here for you, everyone will be safe and enjoy their time without the risks of injuries or accidents. Next time you’re busy with sealcoating or similar tasks, you’ll know how to protect yourself and wear sunscreen and wear a good hat. So go on, have fun this spring, and be safe!