Playgrounds are fun places where children can explore, move, and play. But they can also be dangerous, especially if children are unsupervised or the area is poorly designed or maintained. According to the CDC, more than 200,000 children in the U.S. are treated each year for playground-related injuries. Fortunately, these accidents can be avoided with a few tips on how to play it safe on the playground.
Look Before You Leap
Before allowing children to play, conduct a quick survey of the area to make sure the playground is free of hazards, such as broken glass or trash on the ground. Also, check that the surface beneath equipment is shock-absorbing, such as rubber, mulch, or sand. Look out for rust, exposed nails or screws, and loose pieces on playground equipment, as these can be hazardous. And finally, ensure that any metal is not too hot.
Playgrounds are often designed for multiple age groups. Help children stay safe by limiting their exploration to equipment that is appropriate for them.
Experts estimate that nearly half of all playground injuries are related to inadequate supervision. Children should be watched at all times when on the playground. For example, monitor the slide so children go up the ladder one at a time. If there are multiple adults, split up to watch the area from different perspectives.
It is important to discuss safety measures with children and set guidelines, reminding them that the playground is a public space that is shared with other children. Teach children that pushing, shoving or crowding while on the playground can be dangerous. Talk to them about sharing, taking turns, and being kind. And don’t forget to include a lesson on “stranger danger”.
A trip to the playground can be a fun-filled outdoor activity when parents and children remember the importance of staying safe.
The Morrissey Law Firm, P.C., is located in Springfield, Missouri, and focuses in personal injury and wrongful death trial work. If you need a personal injury or wrongful death attorney, please contact us to schedule a consultation.