Rocks, toys and sticks can wreak havoc on your lawnmower's blades, and can also be a danger to you. Taking some time to check the lawnmower's path will save you a lot of trouble.
Photo by Andrew Fogg
While it might seem obvious that you shouldn't run over things with your lawnmower, small objects can end up well hidden in longer grass. Ed Perratore at Consumer Reports suggests you walk about without your mower to scope out the exact path you'll be going over. Small objects can become projectiles when they get hit with a lawnmower blade, and you don't want anything flying at you or your family.
This is especially important if you haven't mowed in a while, or if you are using your mower to cut down taller weeds or grass. Make sure you're using the right type of mower for the job, and always take the extra time to be safe.
5 ways to stay safe when mowing the lawn [Consumer Reports]