Media Release


Maintenance of Surfaces and Supervision to Reduce Injury in Playgrounds



Kidsafe Victoria today highlighted the use of age appropriate equipment and maintaining appropriate levels of impacting absorbing surfaces, as important factors in reducing the number of injuries to children in playgrounds.


The comments follow a report released today by the Victorian Injury Surveillance Unit (VISU) which revealed that on average, 1,491 children aged 0-14 years are admitted to hospital every year due to a fall from playground equipment.

The report shows that children commonly fall from climbing equipment (e.g. monkey bars and jungle gyms), trampolines, slides, swings and flying foxes.

Jason Chambers, Kidsafe Victoria Project Manager, noted the importance of children being active and getting outside to play.

"Play is essential for children's development - it provides them with opportunities to learn and develop their social skills, problem solving skills, imagination and sense of self," said Mr Chambers.

Kidsafe Victoria encourages the development of safe, creative play environments that comply with the Australian Standards, including playspaces in local parks, schools, early childhood centres and family backyards.

Mr Chambers said that while it was important that safety measures were in place to eliminate hazards that are likely cause serious injuries, it is also important that playspaces contain challenges for children and aren't totally risk free environments.

Important factors to reduce serious injury to children in playgrounds:
  • Ensure that an appropriate impact absorbing surface is underneath and around playground equipment.
  • Regularly inspect and maintain impact absorbing surfaces to ensure that they are in good condition and kept at the appropriate depth. Loose fill surfaces such as tanbark can be easily displaced, particularly in high traffic areas of playgrounds.
  • Ensure that children are provided with and using equipment that matches their level of development and capabilities.
  • Always supervise children closely when using play equipment, particularly young children who are still developing their physical abilities and risk assessment skills.
  • Kidsafe Victoria have useful playground safety resources for parents/carers, early childhood educators and schools including:

    Safe play for children under 5

    Playground Safety

    Media Enquiries:
    Ron Smith, Corporate Media Communications, Kidsafe Victoria - Mobile: 0417 329 201