New rubber playground surfaces are replacing concrete or mulch. These rubber surfaces are designed to cushion a child’s fall and reduce the chance for a serious injury. The surfaces are made to be more flexible and pliable; however, when it is hot outside, this rubber material can reach scorching temperatures. An investigation compared the temperatures of mulch to the temperatures of the rubber surfaces at playgrounds. The results showed that the mulch reached temperatures of 136 degrees while the rubber reached temperatures of 170 degrees. Individuals also stated that the hot rubber surfaces melted the bottoms of some thin sandals.
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When temperatures do rise, all playground equipment will become hot. It is important as a parent to use caution when heading to playgrounds during this weather. Make sure playground equipment is at an appropriate temperature before allowing children to use it. Teach your children to wear shoes at all times while at parks to avoid burning their feet on hot surfaces. High temperatures can be hazardous to children while in cars as well. In a previous blog post we spoke about the dangers of children being left in hot cars. To read more visit our blog here.
It is very important that all aspects of the park are up to safety standards. All park equipment should meet safety codes and be inspected regularly. If your child was injured at a playground due to defective or neglected equipment, you should contact a personal injury attorney to see what your rights are.
Source: Fox23, “Heat can cause playground dangers for children.”