Dolman Law Group is an award winning Clearwater car accident and personal injury law firm. Matthew Dolman has been selected as a Florida Super Lawyers in 2013, 2014 and 2015 by his colleagues. Mr. Dolman has been nominated as a top 100 trial attorney and top 40 under 40 by National Trial Lawyers. He is a lifetime member of both the Million Dollar and Multi-Million Dollar Advocacy Forum.
Friday, July 3, 2015
Playgrounds Can Be Dangerous Places and a Playground Injury Can Be Severe
Playgrounds are supposed to be designed as safe places for children to
play without getting injured. Unfortunately that is not always the case.
According to the National Playground Institute over 200,000 playground injuries
are reported each year, nationwide. Of these 45 percent are considered severe.
75 percent happen in public playgrounds such as schools, parks, and daycare
centers. 60 percent of those accidents are caused by falls from playground
equipment. Falls also account for over 80 percent of home playground injuries.
The National Program for Playground Safety created S.A.F.E. which separates
the safety of playgrounds into four separate categories to create and maintain
a safe playground design.
- Supervision –
Lack of adult supervision leads to many serious playground accidents. Children
should be in clear visibility of parents or adult supervisors at all times. The
parents should check the area frequently for dangers of faulty equipment, trip
and fall obstacles and even aggressively behaving children.
- Age appropriate
design – Playgrounds should have separate areas for children from 2 to 5 years
old and 5 through 12.
- Fall Surfacing -
Surfaces that are considered acceptable for placing beneath and around
playground equipment include mulch, sand, rubberized mats and materials, wood
fiber and pea gravel.
- Equipment design
and maintenance – All equipment should not have any loose or unanchored parts,
sharp edges or protrusions and should be functioning properly according to
The Consumer Product Safety Commission maintains a set of standards
which are updated bi-annually.The
Americans with Disabilities Act put forth a standard providing for all children
to have accessibility and the opportunity to play. The American Society for
Testing and Materials (ASTM) has issued a set of quality standards for
Be Diligent for
Assuming that any playground is a safe play haven for kids can be a
critical mistake. Dangers can be lurking anywhere in the form of faulty
equipment, poorly padded surfaces, bullies or understaffed or untrained adult
supervision. Falling from a piece of playground equipment can result in injury
but add to that equation, steel equipment parts and a hard landing surface and
the resulting injury may be critical. Some playground injuries are minor and
part of growing up like bruises and scrapes, but others may be severe or even
grave. Traumatic brain injuries, spinal injuries, strangulation and broken
bones are all disturbingly too common on playgrounds.
It is the responsibility of the supervisory team that oversees the
operation of a playground, to be sure that it is safe at all times when
children are or may be present. Florida’s Childcare Standards (F.A.C.
65C-22.003) encompasses playground safety in the list of required courses for
childcare providers. If a child is on a playground where there is a childcare staff
member present, that supervising adult must have passed a course in playground
safety. This Florida Standard is in addition to the abovementioned National standards.
If you have a child that was injured, or even died, while playing at a
public playground, such as a school, daycare or public park, there may be
compensation available. A Florida playground accident attorney will be able to
thoroughly investigate what caused the accident and determine who was at fault.
It could be the equipment manufacturer, the school or daycare, the department
of parks and recreation, a supervisor or even another child who was not
properly supervised by a parent. It takes an experienced playground accident
lawyer to determine the actual facts in these cases. Sometimes the injured
child will not recollect what happened but others may have seen. Children can
make excellent witnesses and the attorney knows this.
The attorneys at Dolman Law Group have the experience and skill to
develop a case when a child is injured on a playground. Do not wait until the
facts become clouded and difficult to find. Contact Dolman Law Group today and
speak with an attorney who really cares about you and your child.