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The Importance of Playground Safety

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The importance of safety measures on the playground is not a topic lost on parents and local school system employees. Parents are accustomed to dealing with the scrapes and bruises children receive burning calories playing outdoors on playground equipment, and both parents and teachers alike understand the need for children to have a safe outlet to gets exercise and have fun. Even though playground guidelines and standards exist to try and ensure safety, more than 200,000 children under the age of 14 are treated for playground related injuries in emergency departments across the United States each year. Custom recreational surfacing companies fill a need in the market for recreational safety surfacing, playground flooring, outdoor flooring, and playground fall protection. We realize how important your vigilance is when it comes to your child’s safety, so we’ve prepared some information to help you remain proactive and keep a watchful eye.

 

Facts on Playground Injuries

Research shows that roughly 56% of injuries sustained on playgrounds that are treated in emergency departments around the US are fractures and contusions/abrasions. Most of these injuries are the result of a fall. The equipment that plays the biggest culprit in these cases are climbers, swings, and slides. Recreational safety surfacing helps soften the blow and prevent these kind of injuries from happening. A whopping 75% of injuries occur on public playgrounds, so safety surfacing and playground fall protection are a must for schools and public parks. Special attention must be paid to children ages 5-9; statistically speaking they are the group most likely to suffer injuries.

 

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Unfortunately, the overall rate of children seen in emergency departments for cases of traumatic brain injury has increased significantly in more recent years (2005-2013). Not unlike other injuries often sustained on playground equipment by children, roughly two-thirds of playground related TBIs occurred on public playgrounds, be it at a school or place of sports and recreation. Most TBIs were sustained on monkey bars, swings, or other climbing equipment. Not surprisingly, most emergency department visits for playground related TBIs occur during weekdays, Monday through Friday. Boys are more likely to sustain a TBI on the playground than girls.

 

What Can YOU Do?

Be sure to be proactive in your child’s safety. You can help take steps to keep your kids safe.

  • Check that playgrounds are built with soft recreational safety surfacing under them. Wood chips, sand, or mulch are outdated options and offer sub-par protection when compared to custom recreational surfacing.
  • Read all playground signs and be sure your child uses playground equipment appropriate for their age group.
  • Keep an eye out for things in the play area that could trip your child, like tree stumps or rocks.
  • Make sure all guardrails are in good condition to ensure protection from falls.

 

If you’re interested in purchasing custom recreational safety surfacing for your home playground, private or public school district, or town recreational department, please contact us anytime here or at 330.567.6058.

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