Safety tips for mowing with zero turn mower

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by toolmaker1967, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. toolmaker1967

    toolmaker1967 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 22

    I have just purchased my first ZTR GreatDane Chariot for residential use.
    I do have some small short steep hills to mow and would like some safety tips for mowing with a ZTR on hills and in general. My mower does not have ROP but it does have a seat belt.
    What are the most common accidents that happen on a ZTR???

  2. TurnGreen1

    TurnGreen1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 103

    tie a rope to the bumper and lower it down the hill. Just DON'T let go of the rope.....
  3. TurnGreen1

    TurnGreen1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 103

    I am just kidding you are a smart man to ask the question. Safety is a key point to being successful. Get a roll over protection system installed. And practice riding it before you even think about a hill. Then start by going uphill first. Really you should always go uphill if possible. Next AlWAYS mow away from people. If you are not use to the power of a zero turn. They can shoot some nasty stuff out at a very dangerous speed. The list can go on and on. But a big thing is take it SLOW... when you feel you have it for the first time. You don't! Take it slow! GL
  4. Yater

    Yater LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 687

    Uh...don't wear a seatbelt without a ROPS. Why would they spec a mower with a belt and no rops? Talk about a law suit waiting to happen...
  5. mcw615

    mcw615 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 473

    Get a ROP put on, and never stop fearing the mower or get too comfortable with it on hills. A year ago I rolled my Toro Diesel with the ROP system down, it rolled completely over me twice. Came across my rib cage and it also rolled over my head, the Lord was looking out for me - after being rushed to the hospital which they were considering flying me due to the mechanism and amount of pain I was in.. I VERY fortunately walked away after an over night observation with only a fractured rib. God Bless
  6. badbart

    badbart LawnSite Member
    Posts: 204

    ^ What they said! I have a Great Dane and a Scag zero turn, both 48's. I don't know why, but the GD does not do hills well. In fact it will get away from you in a hurry! Once it starts sliding it's gone. My Scag is much more stable and usaully I can save it if I feel it slipping. The GD weighs in at about 1000 lbs vs. the Scag's 800+. Maybe that makes the difference, I don't know, but use caution!! Operate it on level ground until you get used to the controls and how it handles. You can't be too safe!
  7. Alpha Property

    Alpha Property LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 409

    as stated above- do not wear the seat belt without a ROPS, the belt is there to keep you inside of the ROPS, if you don't have one then you want to be thrown as far as possble away from the rolling machine, stay up and down hills as much as possible
  8. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,403

  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    How odd, the Great Dane site shows two Chariots...
    One with, and one without Rops...
    So I'll believe you, which isn't to say that I approve of this.

    And whether it's the most common accident or not I couldn't say...
    But one very deadly one would be the Ztr flipping over on top of the
    operator, causing pretty much instant death.
    This happens several times a year across the USA, now that's only according to the articles I read, so it probably happens a bit more...

    Now I'm done paying for mine, with a few 100 hours on the meter I can say I've cut some steep hills and it's never flipped, but...
    It's landed me in a steep concrete culvert and a few other ditches, more than once have I had to get the truck to go fish out my mower.
    So I not only have a ROPS but I leave it up and installed at ALL times, even on perfectly flat land.

    And I really think you should get that ROPS system, installed.

    Then, learn the height and dimensions of it because you'll need to get used to it
    around low hanging branches, but it sure beats being crushed by a 1,500 pound machine.

    Peace out
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2009
  10. LouisianaLawnboy

    LouisianaLawnboy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,199

    If their is hills in the area your dealer should only be selling units with ROPS. Call the dealer and get ROPS put on.

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