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What Kind of Supervision Should Be Provided for Children on Playground Slides?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network


At most schools and day care centers, there is a playground available for use by the children enrolled in the program. Most of these playgrounds have slides. For most children on most days, the playground slide is a location of fun and enjoyment for the children. While the slides can and should be fun, many children suffer personal injuries as a result of playground slide accidents every year. There are a number of factors to be considered when providing supervision of children using a playground slide. These factors include the following:

the type and material of the slide (metal versus plastic);

the height of the slide;

the height and type of ladder attached to the slide:

the length of the slide;

other playground equipment in the area the age;

age of the children playing on the playground;

age of the children playing on the slide;

number of supervisors on or near the playground area;

prior incidents of injuries at the playground; and

other factors.

For smaller and younger children, supervision is a must to ensure that the children are able to safely climb the steps and then safely go down the slide. Day care center and school staff members should make sure that the landing or the end of the slide is clear of any other children. Playground rules and safety measures should be explained to the children and should be followed iand enforced by day care center in school staff and administrators.

A child should not go down the slide standing, on the knees, or backwards. Furthermore they should be no jumping off the slide. Some may think that it is safer for an adult to ride tandem down the slide with the child on the adult’s lap. On many slides this can be actually more dangerous. In some instances the rubber shoe of the child gets caught on the plastic slide and the weight or force of the adult behind the child causes a serious lower limb injury to the child.

If a child is been injured on a playground slide or other playground equipment, it is important that the parent or school obtain timely medical treatment. Thereafter, a parent or guardian should consult with a Child Injury Lawyer to determine the respective rights of the child in the responsibilities of the day care center or school. The book – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Playground Injuries, School Injuries, Day Care Center Injuries, and other topcis. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

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