Swing Set Safety Guidelines
We are committed to supplying safe swing products for children. Please review our swing set safety guidelines below.
Why We Say Our Swings are For Children Only:
Our swings have “Made for children only” stamped into the seat. The reasons we say that we design our swings for children only is three fold.
1. ASTM states that swings should be designed for specific ages. We have the A1003 for under two, the A1000 and A1700 for the age group 2-5 and the strap seats and flat seats for ages 5-12.
2. Some adult’s bottoms simply do not fit into the swings.
3. Probably the most important is that although the swings will hold several thousand pounds, if a person with a larger frame uses a swing on a set that has been designed for shorter and smaller frames, then the connecting hardware will not function properly and can become a pry bar and ruin the swing, which could result in injury. If a set is designed specifically for a taller height, then this would not result in this happening. However, most swing sets are usually designed for children, with adults trying to use a child’s swing set.
I hope this helps you to understand why we say that our swings are defined by children only.
Our manufacturer believes that their seats are made to the highest standards available. Many companies do not add some of their safety features because they are not able to be seen by the customer, and therefore it is not apparent why the added cost. However, the manufacture adds these safety features because they feel it greatly adds to the strength of their swings and therefore the well being of the children that use our equipment.
There are several differences between the seats we sell and other swing seats. Some are natural rubber and have a thinner rubber and/or thinner steel insert. Most seats do not have a one piece steel insert.
Natural rubber is often recycled from tires etc, and you are never sure what the actual rubber mixture is. It often wears off on children’s clothes, cracks and crazes making the seat unsightly and allowing moisture to get into the seat. This makes the seat deteriorate at a much quicker rate. The seats we sell are made of EPDM rubber that is made especially for their swings. The rubber does not rub off on children’s clothes, and the seats last much longer than natural rubber swings. This rubber holds up well in extreme temperatures, both very hot and very cold. EPDM does not contain any phthalates or latex, making it a very safe material.
Their one piece steel insert is not used in most other swing seats either. Making a one piece insert is much more expensive than tabbing an insert together because of the waste that is caused. However the manufacturer feels that the strength of seat is greatly increased and warrants the expense.
The seats have galvanized steel triangular brackets and galvanized steel plates that are riveted to the seat with galvanized rivets. The manufacturer goes to the added expense of welding each triangle together so that they cannot be pulled apart or pulled off the seat. We believe the swings are one of the few that have welded triangles. The connecting hardware is constructed of a triangle and plate.
We feel that the children that use our swing seats warrant the added safety features that our seats contain. Also, because of the extra strength and durability, our seats add value because of the replacement cost of the products and labor to replace worn swing seats will greatly decrease.
The following are potential safety hazards for playground equipment and swing sets that should be checked to see if any of them have occurred in or near your school playground equipment:
- Visible cracks, bending, warping, rusting, or breakage of any school playground equipment component.
- Deformation of any swing set parts such as open hooks, shackles, rings, links etc.
- Worn hangers and chains on any of your swing sets.
- Missing, damaged, or loose swing seats or swing set parts; heavy seats with sharp edges or corners.
- Footings exposed, cracked, or loose in ground.
- Broken support/anchors.
- Protruding bolt ends that do not have smooth finished caps and covers.
- Accessible sharp edges or points on your school playground equipment.
- Broken or missing rails, steps, rungs, or seats.
- Chipped or peeling paint on any swing sets or playground equipment.
- Exposed ends of tubing that should be covered by plugs or caps.
- Surfacing material worn or scattered (in landing pits, etc.)
- Vandalism (broken glass, trash, etc.)
- Worn bearings or other parts, especially under swing sets, slides, etc.
- Pinch or crush point (exposed mechanisms, junctures of moving components, e.g.)
- Splintered, cracked, or deteriorated wood.
- On hard surfaces, loose bolts, nuts, etc.
- Poor drainage areas around playground equipment.
- Tripping hazards such as roots, rocks, or other environmental obstacles.
- Lack of lubrication on moving parts.
NOTE: Use only commercial playground parts for commercial and school playground equipment – not residential.
Articles on Safety:
School Administrators should carefully consider the benefits of outdoor play before eliminating recess from their curriculum. –National Association for the Education of Young Children
The National SAFE KIDS Campaign, an organization committed to preventing unintentional injury to children across the globe. See a recent article they have provided.
The Ten Things Every Good Park Supervisor Should Know
1. Make sure surfaces around playground equipment have at least 12 inches of wood chips, mulch, and, pea gravel or mats made of safety-tested rubber or rubber-like materials.
2. Check that protective surfacing extends at least 6 feet in all directions from play equipment. For swings, be sure surfacing extends, in back and front, twice the height of the suspending bar.
3. Make sure play structures more than 30 inches high are spaced at least 9 feet apart.
4. Check for dangerous hardware, like open “S” hooks or protruding bolt ends.
5. Make sure spaces that could trap children, such as openings in guardrails or between ladder rungs, measure less than 3.5 inches or more than 9 inches.
6. Check for sharp points or edges in equipment. Pay close attention to swing seats to assure metal inserts have not become exposed, leaving a sharp edge.
7. Look out for tripping hazards, like exposed concrete footings, tree stumps, rocks, shifting in equipment decks/transfer stations and possible exposed filter fabric barrier.
8. Make sure elevated surfaces, like platforms and ramps, have guardrails to prevent falls.
9. Check playgrounds regularly to see that equipment and surfacing are in good condition.
10. Carefully supervise children on playgrounds to make sure they’re safe.