Safety warning to families over re-opening of playgrounds

3 minute read
Safety warning to families over re-opening of playgrounds

Published at 3:21pm 23rd June 2020.

As the government announced outdoor playgrounds will re-open, a warning has been issued over their safety.

The Register of Play Inspectors International (RPII) is the UK body for examining and accrediting indoor and outdoor playground inspectors.

It issued a statement on Tuesday with guidance to families looking to head out to play areas.

“While we are pleased that the Government has finally announced the date for the reopening of outdoor playgrounds in England, we are aware that some owners and operators of playground facilities have halted safety inspections of playgrounds altogether during the lockdown period," it said.

"The Register of Play Inspectors International (RPII) is therefore today calling for all playground owners to carry out an in-depth inspection prior to the reopening of any facility and ensure that all inspection schedules are brought fully up to date.

"The RPII is expecting playgrounds to be very heavily used, especially with the warm weather that we are currently experiencing and the eagerness of the public to start using them again, so it is vital that playgrounds are thoroughly inspected to ensure a satisfactory level of safety is in place.

"Owners and operators of playground facilities also have a responsibility to open playgrounds safely and remove any temporary barriers that may have been put up during lockdown which may also be hazardous.”

Guidance on using playgrounds safely:

  • If the playground facility you visit has not yet officially been opened, please do not attempt to use, or access the equipment or area.
  • Do not remove any temporary barriers to the playground or plastic fencing or unravel any swing seats or cables that may have been secured to put them out of use – this must be done safely by the owner or operator of the facility.
  • Follow the current social distance guidelines when visiting and encourage your children to do the same.
  • If the playground is busy, consider coming back at a later time. Talk to your children about this possibility before visiting.
  • Wash your and your children’s  hands before and after visiting. Take hand sanitiser with you and consider taking a bottle of water for if your children’s hands get covered in mud. Ensure your children are using hand sanitiser frequently.
  • Follow and adhere to all current government advice in addition to the above guidance.

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