Playground accidents are the leading cause of injuries to children in elementary school, with more than 200,000 children treated each year at hospitals for playground-related injuries.
At school during recess, physical education or after-school care, children playing on the playground need to be properly supervised. While some accidents are bound to happen when children play, sometimes accidents occur due to:
- Inadequate supervision. In many schools, lunch aides are given the responsibility to supervise on the playground with little or no training. It is also important to have enough supervisors to properly watch the number of kids that are on the playground at one time.
- Playground equipment that is improperly installed or not up in accordance with safety standards. It is important for playgrounds to be properly designed with soft ground cover, enough distance between equipment to avoid crowding and dangerous contact, and monkey bars spaced properly to avoid getting a child’s head stuck between them,
- Equipment that is not properly maintained. When equipment is not properly checked and maintained, sharp edges, broken chains, damaged equipment parts, worn-out surfaces and other dangers can cause serious injuries.
- Equipment that is not age-appropriate. Schools that contain multiple grades, such as an attached elementary and middle school, need to have separate play areas where kids can play on equipment that is safe and appropriate for their size and skill level.
Playground accidents can be serious, causing broken bones, dislocations, concussions, strangulation, spinal injuries and, in rare instances, death. On average, 17 children die each year as a result of playground accidents.
Was Your Child Injured in a Playground Accident?
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