With summer, comes great weather and more outdoor play, especially on playgrounds. However older playgrounds are not always safe. Between 2001 and 2008, approximately 15 percent of playground injuries were labeled severe and 3 percent required hospitalization (Consumer Product Safety Commission, October 2009). According to 2009 data from the National Electronic Surveillance System (NEISS), the most common injuries are as follows:
The National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS) created this 10-point Summer Safety Checklist for playgrounds. NPPS also created a four-part safety checklist called the “Kid Checker” to help evaluate a playground’s supervision, age-appropriateness, fall surfacing and necessary equipment maintenance and then how to address any issues. You can download Kid Checker here.
The NPPS also has addressed additional safety recommendations such as use of bicycle helmets, preventing burns on hot surfaces and temperature considerations in their Head to Toe Safety checklist. Lastly, this video details the appropriate attire for children playing on playgrounds which you can share with parents.
Many of these tips can be applied year-round. So whether your schools are in session or your playgrounds are being used while students are out for the summer, make sure you playgrounds are safe!