In the summer months, kids spend more time on playgrounds and in the sunshine, increasing their exposure to the inherent risks that come with increased activity. As parents, though we all know accidents can happen, when injuries occur due to poorly designed or maintained facilities, it may be time to talk to a Baltimore premises liability attorney,
There are a number of issues that can impact the level of safety in any play facility. Among the most important are:
Thermal Burns: The plastics and rubbers used to make many slides and other equipment on playgrounds can become extremely hot, leading to serious burns. It may shock some parents to learn that outdoor temperatures as low as 74 degrees can lead to thermal burns if the equipment is in the direct sun. In particular, dark colored plastics or metal equipment that is uncoated can be a serious risk.
Falls on to Hard Surfaces: The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) notes that many daycares and other children’s facilities may be tempted to put plastic play equipment on cement, tile, or wooden floors indoors, at serious risk to youngsters. Climbing equipment should always be placed outdoors on mulch or sand, providing a relatively soft landing spot for children who fall. It can make the difference between bumps and bruises or broken bones and concussions.
Strangulation: While children might have a lot of fun while climbing on cargo netting, if the openings are too large, children’s head could become trapped, leading to strangulation. The CPSC advises that openings with a perimeter exceeding 17 inches could be dangerous. These nets are popular play areas in fast food restaurants and kids’ play parks, so parents need to pay attention to the potential for disaster.
Exposure to pesticides: While many parents are concerned about kids playing on the grass after it’s been sprayed with pesticides, most don’t realize that older playgrounds (built before 2004) may have been constructed using wood that was treated with Chromated Copper Arsenate (CCA). It’s a substance made of some dangerous chemicals, as the name implies, and may be around in backyard – and public – playgrounds across the country. Research indicates that these chemicals have the potential to leach into surrounding areas, prompting warnings about playing beneath or near areas where this type of material exists. Furthermore, any skin that has been exposed to CCA-treated equipment should be washed with soap and water, and clothing should be laundered separately from other items.
We expect due care when playgrounds and equipment are developed and maintained for our children. When risks are amplified because proper steps were not taken to provide a safe environment and our children are injured, we want action. At the Law Office of Hasson D. Barnes, we won’t be pacified by lame excuses and explanations after a child is injured. Contact us today to schedule a confidential consultation in our office.