Fall Cleanup Safety

Fall Cleanup Safety

1. Warm up, Cool Down, Take Breaks.
Walk and stretch before exertion. This helps prevent muscle strain in the neck, back and shoulders. When finished with chores, stretch again to help relieve muscle tension. Take periodic breaks and as always stay hydrated. Drink a lot of water--hydrated muscles are happy muscles.

2. Dress Appropriately
Stay warm/stay cool. Wear long sleeves and long pants to protect skin from bugs, scratches and sun. Wear sturdy shoes with slip resistant soles.

3. Inspect & Use The Right Equipment
Use a rake that is comfortable for your height and strength, and look for ergonomic handles. Wear gloves if the handle isnt padded to prevent blisters. *If using power equipment (hedge trimmers, blowers, chainsaws and mowers) remember to wear safety glasses (debris can damage eyes) and ear protection (cumulative damage can lead to hearing loss).

4. Use Proper Posture & Movements
There is a tendency to favor our dominant arm when doing yard work, which is a habit to avoid as this leads to overwork/strain of certian muscle groups (alternate). Remember to bend at the knees NOT the waist when picking up items. Dont overload leaf bags, and remember wet leaves are especially heavy. You should be able to handle bags comfortably, without straining.

Ladder Safety
1. Inspect Your Ladder- Check for loose screws, hinges or rungs.

2. Proper Setup- Place ladder on firm even ground. Engage ladder locks and braces before climbing. Watch out for electrical wires, tree limbs and other obstructions.

3. 1 to 4 Rule- The base of the ladder should be 1 foot away from the wall for every 4 feet above the ground. If going on roof, the top of the ladder should extend 3 feet higher than the rooftop and make sure there is enough overlap between the upper and lower sections of an extension ladder to provide stability.

4. Proper Footwear is a Must- Make sure shoelaces are tied. Do not wear leather-soled shoes, as they are slippery. Make sure soles of shoes are free of debris or greasy, oily or wet substances.

5. Be safe- Ask someone to hold the ladder while you climb. Stay in the center of the rungs as you ascend/descend and always hold on with both hands.

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