Playground Safety

Each year in the United States, upwards of 200,000 children are admitted to emergency rooms with injuries sustained on the playground, such as concussions, sprains, and broken bones. Playground injuries usually occur in places like schools, parks, and daycare centers where energetic children abound. It is crucial to closely monitor children in these areas and ensure children are at as little risk of injury as possible in playground environments.

To maintain safety, playground operators recommend routine playground inspections using a safety checklist. Many playgrounds nationwide lack the proper surfacing needed to ensure that accidental falls do not result in concussions or fractures. Metal-based playground equipment can rust and weather over time, and if left unattended, the faulty equipment puts children at much greater risk of hurting themselves. Playground checklists allow those in charge of playgrounds to maintain safety and mitigate the risk of young ones sustaining injuries.

When developing a playground maintenance routine, it is also helpful to familiarize yourself with best practices surrounding playground safety standards and regulations and learn how these came to be. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is a leading authority on the safety of playground equipment and other commonly sold goods in the US. Local and state legislatures model their stipulations regarding playground safety after the guidance published by the CPSC and the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM). The published information from these organizations is a valuable resource for those who wish to improve their playground's safety.

Lastly, constructing and posting a coherent set of playground rules in easily visible locations will give parents and caregivers a helpful base of knowledge they can reference to keep their little ones safe while at play. Some guidance may seem obvious, such as ensuring shoes are tied, but when it comes to the safety of children, it is necessary to be thorough. There are many critical considerations that supervising adults must be aware of that will allow them to keep their children safe.