With the weather warming in Virginia it’s about that time of year to grab your kids on a Saturday and take them down to the public playground for a day of climbing and sliding.
But before you do, it’s important to understand the risks involved with public playgrounds and what you can do to make sure your kids have a safe and awesome time. Every year, about 200,000 children are sent to U.S. emergency rooms because of injuries suffered on a playground; make sure your child isn’t one of them.
Before you let your child loose on the park, take a close look at the structure to make sure you aren’t putting your kid at unnecessary risk. Here are some tips courtesy of the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
- Do a search for dangerous hardware, like large bolt ends or open “S” hooks, as well as for hard or sharp edges on the playground equipment.
- Ensure that spaces which could potentially trap kids measure 3.5 inches or less, or are greater than 9 inches. Spaces include ladder rungs, guardrails, etc.
- For areas around the playground, make sure there are at least 12 inches of mats, wood chips, mulch, sand or pea gravel to help prevent injury.
- Play structures that are greater than 30 inches in height should be spaced a minimum of 9 feet apart.
- Look for underfoot hazards like tree stumps or rocks that could potentially trip a child.
- Always supervise children when they are on the playground.
- Check that all elevated surfaces like slide platforms or ramps have guardrails to protect children from falling.
- Ensure that the playground is in good working condition before letting your child loose.
- Have fun!
Parrish Law Firm, PLLC child injury lawyer works with Virginia residents whose children have been injured as a result of another party’s negligence. Send us an email today or call us at 703-906-4229.