National Playground Safety Week is officially upon us!
While a playground is an important element of any community, neighborhood, or school, it’s even MORE important that the playground be both safe and fun! As we continue to welcome visitors to our playgrounds, it is important we take the appropriate steps to ensure that everyone has the best and safest experience possible. With that in mind, here are a few tips for designing, building, and maintaining your playground!
Start with a Professional Playground Design
One of the easiest ways to ensure your playground is both fun and safe is to start with a strong foundation. When designing your playground, make sure to consider layouts and equipment with age-appropriate and inclusive play activities. Including sensory components like outdoor musical instruments, spinning seats and cozy spaces are a great place to start.
When considering adding elevated play structures or even swings to your design, make sure you also include adequate safety surfacing and appropriate depths for protection in the event of falls. A seasoned playground designer can help guide you through best practices. You should strive to make your playground a fun space for children of all ages and abilities!
Playground Construction & Installation
When shopping for playground equipment, it’s important to choose a playground manufacturer that meets both the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) and Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) guidelines. Manufacturers that meet these guidelines take important elements like playground surfacing and elevated barriers into consideration when designing their products. These considerations help to prevent serious injuries in the event of accidents such as falls.
Finding a certified playground installer is as equally as important as the manufacturer. A certified installer will be well-versed in industry regulations on safety and installation requirements from the manufacturer. This will help safeguard against safety hazards such as:
- Sharp or protruding bolts on elevated decking
- Missing safety labels outlining age recommendations and rules for equipment.
- Improper fall zone depths and dimensions
Playground Inspections & Maintenance
Routine inspections and maintenance are key to keeping your playground fun and safe for everyone. Hazards like broken or missing components, loose hardware, and unstable pieces, can pose dangers to children and families. Periodically inspect your play equipment and safety surfacing. If your inspection reveals any issues, make sure to take care of them as quickly as possible.
Proper signage covering age recommendations and safety rules for playground equipment is also a must. If your existing playground is missing its former signage, most manufacturers can provide updated signage or safety labels upon request.
Lastly, if you haven’t already, don’t forget to include a hand sanitizing station and make sure equipment is disinfected regularly. Playground Guardian offers a range of surface cleaners and disinfectants that can help keep your playground safe from harmful bacteria.
By regularly inspecting, testing, and maintaining all aspects of your playground or park space, you can help to maintain a safe and fun environment for all children and families! Contact the team at Playground Guardian today to schedule your next inspection or demo of Park Protector software.
Our team at Playground Guardian wishes you and your family a safe and happy National Playground Safety week.