A safe playground should encourage children to take healthy risks while challenging their bodies and minds. To make a playground safer, parents, teachers, babysitters and other adults should survey the area for hazards and report any problems. Make sure the surface under playground equipment is made of impact-absorbing materials like wood chips, mulch or shredded rubber. Soft surfaces prevent the most serious injuries from falls.
Children’s playgrounds should be places of adventure, joy and imagination. They should also be safe, free of equipment that presents a strangulation risk and of surfaces that can cause injuries from falling or sliding. The equipment should be separated into zones according to age, so that younger and older children can play in areas that are appropriate to their development level. Zones should include pathways that connect them to avoid overcrowding and obstructed vision. The equipment should be inspected regularly to ensure that it is in good working order and that there are no loose bolts, exposed sharp points or protruding ropes.
The ASTM International standards for playground equipment, surfacing and design help to keep kids safe. They provide designers, directors and members of an agency’s facilities planning team with technical safety guidelines for designing, constructing and maintaining playgrounds. They can be used by themselves or in conjunction with the American With Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines.
A Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) is a person who has passed the National Recreation and Park Association’s (NRPA) Safety Institute examination. The NRPA began offering the Safety Institute examination in 1991 to promote the latest public playground industry standards and practices. The CPSC sets standards for the equipment used on a playground. For example, the agency sets requirements to prevent children from getting their heads caught in equipment openings. They also set surfacing standards to prevent head injuries. They recommend a minimum of 6 feet of protective surfacing surrounding all equipment. Supervision is a key element of a 안전놀이터.
Miracle Recreation follows NRPA and the CPSC standards when designing playgrounds for our clients. In addition, nearly all of our products are TUV certified by a third-party validator to meet European standard EN 1176. Additionally, we are a member in good standing with the International Play Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (IPEMA), and our products are validated to IPEMA standards including CAN/CSAZ614, the Children’s Playspaces and Equipment Standard.
Many serious playground injuries can be prevented with the right surfacing material. Playground surfaces must be shock-absorbing and meet minimum critical fall heights to protect kids from life-threatening injuries. The most popular safety surface is poured-in-place rubber. It’s durable, lasts for several years and offers many color options. However, it can be expensive.
Loose-fill surfacing is another option. It’s made from recycled tires and is available in a variety of colors. This surfacing has good impact-absorbing properties and it helps keep tire debris out of landfills. However, it’s easily displaced and requires frequent monitoring to ensure that the depth is adequate. Unitary surfaces like turf provide an aesthetically pleasing appearance and don’t require as much maintenance. It also provides excellent cushioning and is accessible to kids in wheelchairs or strollers. Unlike natural grass, synthetic turf doesn’t require watering or fertilization and is resistant to pests and fungal diseases. It’s also one of the most affordable options.
Kids will always have accidents when playing, but it is the adult guidance and supervision that prevents injuries. To help teachers, substitutes, physical educators and parents supervise children at the playground, Peaceful Playgrounds offers an online course for Playground Supervisor Training. This course covers legal liability, responsibilities before, during and after recess, supervision zones and more.
A safe playground includes safety equipment that is inspected and maintained regularly. It also includes a safety plan for emergencies. It is also important to have a system for communicating with other staff members when out on the playground. Some schools purchase walkie-talkies or designate someone with a cell phone to use during school hours.
Wrapping It Up
This ensures that if an injury or emergency occurs, another person can respond quickly. Having a hard copy checklist for playground safety is also helpful. This way, a supervisor can take it with them when they are on the playground.