A zero-turn radius (ZTR) rotary riding lawn mower is a type of riding mower that is able to make a turn of equal degrees upon its own track. Zero-turn radius riding mowers were designed to out-steer most lawn tractors at an increased speed. Often used by commercial landscapers on golf courses and parks is now fast becoming the lawn care mower of choice for residential and private home use.
Manufacturers of tout the benefits as being able to cut grass in tight spaces and effectively cut close to trees and other objects in your yard; thus eliminating the need for trimmers which will save you time tending to your lawn care needs.
Studies conducted by safety advocates, however, have shown that the zero-turn radius, its speed control mechanism and its increased speed make the machine hard to steer and control near the bottom of a slope (walls, ponds, roads) which lead to increased skidding and possible rollbacks and rollovers.
Most riding lawn mower / lawn tractor accidents are foreseeable and preventable. One way to reduce the risk of a catastrophic injury as a result of a rollover is through the use of Roll-over Protective Structures (ROPS). ROPs consist of either a cab or frame / bars that provide a safe zone for the tractor / mower operator in a rollover. The purpose is to prevent the user from being thrown from, crushed or pinned under the machine to reduce injury risks and increase survival chances. Safety is increased when ROPS are used with seatbelts. Unfortunately, ROPS and seat belts are optional equipment upgrades on many lawn mowers and tractors and are often not purchased or used.
In addition to ROPS and recommended safety features, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends the following safety tips when considering purchasing a zero-turn radius mower:
Edward M. Ricci, P.A. litigates riding lawn mower and riding lawn tractor rollover and zero-turn radius cases throughout Florida and the U.S. We have the experience and resources to effectively seek justice for the families who so desperately need it – many of these who are killed provided the main source of income for their families. Workers’ Compensation alone will not provide for the future wellbeing of the family members.
To learn more about Zero-Turn Radius Lawn Mower Accidents or to receive a complimentary review of a potential case, please contact our law firm online or call us at 561-748-8000. We are happy to answer your questions about zero-turn radius (ZTR) mowers and rollover protection structures (ROPS).
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For more than four decades, Edward M. Ricci has specialized in civil trial law. He pursues justice for victims in the areas of consumer class actions, auto accidents, personal injury and wrongful deaths, cemetery desecrations, insurance litigation and consumer claims. The firm serves consumers throughout Florida and the United States.