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NMIR Safety Standard Proposed in 2002

The following NMIR safety standard was proposed in 2002. This proposed safety standard affords children greater protection than the standard which was adopted and published in September, 2003 because it only allows an override of the NMIR safety feature for a reverse mowing cycle in reverse. The existing standard allows an override of the NMIR safety feature for an entire mowing session.

“14.2.1.8 A means shall be provided that prevents reverse drive operation at a ground speed greater than 0.3 m/s (1 ft/s) with powered blade(s). An override capability may be provided to permit reverse drive with powered blades temporarily. If an override capability is provided, it shall automatically reset when one or more of the following actions occurs: (1) the blade(s) is (are) re-engaged or (2) the engine is restarted or (3) the directional control is moved from reverse. Ride-on machines with zero turn radius capability and machines with front mount mowers are excluded from the requirement.”

The OPEI made the following statement in connection with the new “No Mow In Reverse” safety standard:

“This [NMIR] requirement is intended to reduce the possibility of inadvertent blade contact at the rear of the machine by removing power from the mower blade(s) during reverse operation, by increasing the operator’s awareness of reverse operation, and by encouraging the operator to find alternate ways to mow instead of reverse direction. . . . “ ANSI 14.2.1.8

The OPEI is a manufacturer’s organization which creates voluntary safety standards for riding lawnmowers. The Riding Mower Working Group of the OPEI has considered creating a “No Mow In Reverse” safety standard since at least 1997. A draft of a “No Mow In Reverse” safety standard created in 2002 entitled draft proposal for Backover Protection Requirement (to be added to Section 15 Shields or Guards) click, here:

The organizations/manufacturers involving in the Riding Mower Working Group of the OPEI that were involved in promulgating the NMIR safety standard are: Deere and Company, Simplicity, Seag Power Equipment, Delta Systems, Toro, Dixon Industries, Honda, Briggs and Stratton, MTD Products, Kubota, Snapper, Inc., Electrolux Home Products, Tecumseh Products, Southern Mills and OPEI.
If you wish to comment on the new “No Mow In Reverse” safety standard, simply click on OPEI and send them an email