Playground Safety 101: A summer of pure fun
The warm months provide a perfect opportunity for kids to enjoy their local playground and parks with friends. We all remember the excitement we got as we raced to the park to be the first one on the swings, slide or jungle gym.
While these favourite local spots are perfect places for your kids to get fresh air and exercise while they build memories, certain precautions should be taken to ensure your children are safe.
Did you know that hundreds of thousands of kids are treated in hospitals for playground-related injuries? More importantly, these injuries are often preventable. As a parent, you can help make your local summer hotspots safe for everyone involved. Let’s take a closer look at some ways you can make a difference.
While there are many safety features built into our favourite playground equipment, nothing helps prevent injuries more than proper supervision. This oversight can help ensure kids are using the playground equipment safely. More importantly, if something does happen, an adult can react quickly.
Young kids can easily get caught up in all the excitement of playing on their favourite park equipment. This can make it difficult for them to properly identify hazards or foresee dangerous situations. This is why having adults there to oversee their activity is so important.
Taking a Closer Look
Whether it’s at your local park or in your backyard, we always recommend taking a closer look at the playground equipment your children enjoy. Take this opportunity to ensure the equipment is safe, clean and structurally sound. Regardless of where the equipment is, it should be well maintained. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. No equipment should be broken or cracked
2. Metal equipment shouldn’t have rust
3. Ensure the fence surrounding the playground is in good condition
4. Make sure certain hardware (e.g. bolts or hooks) are not sticking out or loose
5. Plastic equipment shouldn’t be splitting or worn down
6. If your playground has a sandbox, it should be free of sticks, glass or other debris
While you’re doing your inspection, take this opportunity to pick up any trash and report any problems to your local parks and recreation department. Being proactive and doing your part will keep everyone safe as they enjoy their favourite playground activities.
Passing on the Safety Knowledge
While your supervision and keen eye are a big part of the safety equation, it’s only part of it. To improve the chances of your kids staying safe, they should be aware of the hazards that could be found at their favourite playground. Your children should understand the potential dangers and know how to play safely.
Take time before they race off to the local playground to teach them:
1. Not to push or roughhouse while on jungle gyms, slides or swings
2. To be aware of where other kids are on the equipment to avoid collisions
3. To use the equipment properly. For example, they should slide feet first down the slide, not headfirst!
4. To avoid equipment that is wet or slippery
5. To ensure their bikes, scooters or other toys are stored away from the equipment so no other children trip over them
Making this Summer the Safest One Yet
We all want our children to be safe, especially while they’re enjoying their favourite summertime activities. By doing your part, you can help keep them safe, smiling and having fun.
Do you have tips to share with other parents that can help keep their children safe this summer? We’d love to hear from you. Together, we can make our neighbourhoods safer places to play.
The Stop-it! Safety Net
Did you know our fully retractable and stackable safety net can be easily installed at your local park to help increase safety? See how it works, what other parents are saying and buy yours today! It’s a great way to add a little extra safety this summer.