Making a Safer Playground
AthleticNews.com discusses the efforts of communities and states to make safer playgrounds. According to the article, over 200,000 children are treated in emergency rooms for injuries suffered on America’s playgrounds. Serious head injuries, concussions and even catastrophic brain injury can result from slips and falls on asphalt and other surfaces that were once routinely used to cover playgrounds.
Thanks to advances in material science, modern playgrounds are becoming a little safer.
Synthetic materials, such as polyurethane-bound shredded plastic, synthetic rubber tiles and other advanced products represent a high tech approach to mitigating the dangers of playground injuries. On the low-tech end of the spectrum, rounded sand, pea gravel and shredded wood chips provide a forgiving playground surface for children.
Growing concern from lawmakers, playground designers and the general public have led to the adoption of industry standards. Two documents play an important role in determining whether city planners and playground designers have met the standard of care required for a safe playground:
- ASTM F1292-04 Standard Specification for Impact Attenuation of Surfacing Materials within the Use Zone of Playground Equipment
- U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Handbook for Public Playground Safety
California also requires that a playground surface be tested for impact safety before being open for general use. If you or a loved one have been injured and have questions about the standard of care that city and park planners must meet when designing play areas, please contact the Law Offices of Samer Habbas and discuss your concerns with a California premises liability lawyer.