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Forty years ago, playgrounds were downright scary. Everything was made of metal. The slides were so hot they'd burn the skin right off your thighs. Kids would go flying off of those spinning contraptions, or perch precariously 10 feet in the air on monkey bars with rock-hard earth or concrete underneath.
They don't make them like they used to, and that's a good thing. But a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that emergency departments still see more than 20,000 children ages 14 and younger for playground-related
traumatic brain injury each year.
As the weather warms up and trips to the park become frequent, take a moment to familiarize yourself with the risks of playground equipment and injury prevention strategies.
Nearly 80 percent of playground injuries are caused by falls. Some of
the top equipment associated with injuries are climbers, swings, slides and overhead ladders, according to the National Program for Playground Safety.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has come up with
playground hazards you should watch out for when taking your kids to the park.
If your playground is unsafe, report the problem to the owner or park district. And remember, there is no substitute for parental supervision, especially for young children.
Every three minutes, a child in the United States is treated for a sports-related concussion. Learn how to identify concussion symptoms and steps to keep kids safer on the playing field.
Playground Safety Week, an initiative of the National Program for Playground Safety, is a time to focus on outdoor play environments, use good judgment when playing and be thankful for the people who maintain our playgrounds.