Studies reveal that thousands of children are hospitalised for playground injuries each year. Children aged 5 to 9 years face the highest risk of injury and climbing apparatus and trampolines were the most common mechanisms of injury. Local authorities around Queensland in Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast and down on the Gold Coast are constantly improving playground equipment to maximise fun while reducing risks.
A variety of injuries are commonly sustained by children on playground apparatus ranging from minor to severe:
Most injuries result from one of the below mechanisms of injury
Playground operators must take reasonable care to inspect and maintain the infrastructure, equipment and surfaces of designated play areas to make sure children are safe. This includes taking steps to repair broken components and eliminate dangerous conditions which could expose children to injury. Failing to do this may constitute negligence meaning they will be liable for any damage that results.
You will be entitled to public liability compensation if your child was injured because of a playground operator’s negligence or carelessness. Simply sustaining an injury at a playground in the absence of negligence, will not automatically entitle you to compensation.
Examples: Johnny is swinging upside down on the monkey bars at a public playground when the bar he is hanging from snaps and he falls on his head sustaining severe spinal injuries. Johnny may be entitled to compensation from the local council for failing to inspect and maintain the monkey bars.
Jenny is climbing on the jungle gym at a local playground while wearing slippery soled shoes. She loses her footing and falls to the ground fracturing her arm. Jenny has no grounds to make a claim against the playground operators as her injuries did not result from negligence on their part.
If you notice faulty equipment, failing structures or other unsafe conditions in a playground, its important that you report it to the relevant authorities as soon as possible to ensure no further injuries are sustained and the responsible entity is put on notice.
Safety issues at public playgrounds should be reported to the local council. If you are concerned about a playground operated by a private business such as fast food restaurant, raise it directly with the business.
It’s important to get advice for your specific situation. Check if you can make a risk-free compensation claim and get free initial advice from our Principal lawyer, Greg Smith.
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