By definition, playgrounds are places children should be able to go to in order to enjoy themselves and have a good time. You would not think of a playground as a place that would be at all hazardous to kids. Yet, there are a variety of playground hazards lurking around that may go unnoticed, until a little one is hurt.

As sad as it is, in a 2016 article, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states 40 children, averaging 6 years of age, died between 2001 and 2008, due to playground hazards. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) states, in a 2015 publication, that over 200,000 kids, yearly, are taken to the hospital because of injuries sustained on the playground.

Common Playground Hazards

There are certain situations that can easily lead to injuries on the playground. One of the most hazardous playground issues is hard surfaces under equipment. Kids falling on concrete, asphalt or another type of hard surface accounts for thousands of serious injuries each year. The CPSC has put forth in its guidelines that playground equipment is installed over loose-fill materials, such as wood mulch, pea gravel, sand or shredded/recycled rubber mulch. These types of surface materials mitigate the injuries caused by falling from playground equipment.

Other hazards include pinch points in seesaws or merry-go-rounds, which could injure a little hand or finger. Lack of guardrails around elevated platforms and ramps or unstable guardrails present an issue for falls. Rusted or broken equipment could lead to injuries. Sandboxes with sharp objects, broken glass or animal feces present a serious hazard.

Reporting Problems

If you see a problem or possible playground hazard, it should be reported right away to the organization responsible for overseeing the playground. Depending on where the playground is located, this could be the park authority, school, church, or city council.

No matter where you are if you see a playground hazard, it is important those in charge are informed right away. Private, backyard playgrounds can be hazardous, as well as those in public areas. Don’t allow your kids to play on equipment that is broken or not well maintained. Injuries are painful, inconvenient and can be costly, if not deadly.

Residents of the North Port, Englewood and Port Charlotte areas, including the surrounding southwest Florida area, can depend on the law offices of Frohlich, Gordon & Beason, P.A., for excellent representation in personal injury cases. This is our specialty, and we offer free initial consultations for people who are seeking compassionate, effective legal advice for personal injury.