Rakes and Brooms are the right tools for the job of clearing leaves and debris from your yard and hardscape.
The "Debris Blower" a.k.a. Leaf Blower is a dangerous tool. The statistics and facts about the dangers of Leaf Blowers to the environment and health of the users and those within ear shot are overwhelming.
NOISE and AIR POLLUTION have invaded beautiful Contra Costa County. This problem is getting worse with the lack of understanding by "gardeners" or "yard maintenance workers" and the cheap price of Leaf Blowers as a tool. When someone is using this piece of equipment, it gives the appearance of work being done.
Actually, what is happening is leaves and debris is just being pushed around and dust particles are being put into the air for the workers and others to breath. Breathing particle dust or "particulate matter" is extremely dangerous causing a cascade of cardio-pulmonary events in the person breathing this. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District recommends that "Leaf Blowers should not be used in Communities". We know too, that excessive noise pollution is dangerous for those using the equipment especially those who do not wear ear protection. The type of Noise associated with Leaf Blowers is unique because it of the design of the Leaf Blower which ensures the shrieking whining sound that is impossible to ignore and never fades into the background into white noise like other noisy mechanical equipment. Eventually a person who uses the Leaf Blower without protection will have hearing loss or tinnitus and not know that they are even bothered by the noise. The community listening to the Leaf Blower will suffer the annoying sound which can cause stress hormones to be released. Humans respond to this sound as they would a "baby crying" or "air raid siren". It simply can't be tuned out.
This has become a strange and curious issue in that it is perceived as low on the priority list of what is "eco" conscious and important. I haven't seen any noteworthy environmental organizations tackling this problem. What is also interesting is that the workers are not protected from using the debris blower that is causing incredible harm to them. Why? So a leaf can be chased away? We, the collective "We" want a pristine lawn, one free of leaves allows these workers to become ill by using this piece of machinery.
Please switch to Rakes and Brooms! Start Now! Ask your gardener to switch. You too can switch, get some exercise, use a Rake and Broom.
I am in the process of starting a NOBLOW.org website. NOBLOW.anytown.org, anytown is your town. Please stay tuned for this and add your town and stop the prolific use of the Leaf Blower.