How to increase playground safety
Slides and swings and sandboxes, oh my! When kids get to the playground, they see the fun. It’s up to you to see — and prevent — the risk.
Supervisors are the most important people. They must feel empowered to control the playground. They also must be extremely alert and aware of the surroundings. Supervisors need to understand all of the playground equipment and enforce the safe-use guidelines.Clearly post the playground rules, but realize that children do not understand difficult signs. Rules should be simple and understandable. Limit use of equipment based on age-appropriate standards.
Typical playground exposures and risksRegular inspections and maintenance are necessary to keep playgrounds safe. Below is a list of the most common playground risks:
- Hard surfaces, sharp tips, and corners
- Exposed “S” hooks or bolt ends
- Trapping of head and neck
- Trip hazards
- Pinch points
- Ropes and chains as choke hazards
- Poor maintenance and upkeep
- Glass, nails, bottle caps, and trash
- High areas with improper guardrails
- No first aid kit, or it’s too far away