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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>State of Maryland Playground Equipment Question?
Ms Bunter 10:59 AM 09-14-2007
In the playground area outside what types equipment is permitted or required? Is dirt just fine? Thanks
Unregistered 11:01 AM 09-14-2007
I found this in the Maryland handbook:

21 Outdoor Safety.
A. The provider shall have ample, accessible space for outdoor activity which is free from conditions that may be dangerous to the health or safety of children in care.
B. The provider or substitute may not allow a child to play on climbing equipment from which the child could fall 7 feet or more to the ground.
C. During an outdoor activity, the provider or substitute may not allow a child to:
(1) Use unsafe activity equipment;
(2) Use activity equipment in an unsafe manner; or
(3) Wear a clothing item or accessory that may pose a hazard to the child while engaged in the activity.
D. The provider shall ensure that children use suitable protective gear when engaged in an activity for which protective gear is required by law.
E. The provider shall enclose the outdoor play area if required by the Office in order to protect children in care from accessible hazards such as a heavily trafficked area, a body of water, or environmental hazards.
F. When walking with children outdoors, the provider or substitute shall exercise reasonable care to protect children from potentially hazardous areas such as traffic intersections or railroad tracks.
G. Trampolines. The provider or substitute:
(1) May not allow a child in care to use a trampoline located on the premises of the home; and
(2) Shall make a trampoline located on the premises of the home inaccessible to children in care.
.22 Water Safety.
A. A provider may permit children in care to use only swimming facilities that:
(1) Are subject to State or local standards of health, sanitation, and safety; and
(2) Meet those standards.
B. Before a provider or substitute takes children swimming or wading, the provider or substitute shall have written approval from each child's parent, on a form approved or supplied by the Office.
C. Children shall be supervised continuously in the water as follows:
(1) If the water does not exceed 4 feet in depth, the provider or substitute may supervise the children regardless of lifesaving training.
(2) If the water exceeds 4 feet in depth, the provider or substitute shall ensure that an individual 16 years old or older who has completed lifesaving certification approved by the Office is present and on duty at all times while children are in the water. A provider or substitute with the requisite certification may fulfill this requirement.
(3) When the water is over any child's chest and the child cannot swim, an additional adult shall be present in the water to supervise the nonswimming child or children. This means that at least two adults shall be present.
(4) If only one child is present, only one adult is required to supervise that child. However, if the water exceeds 4 feet in depth, that adult shall have completed approved lifesaving training.
(5) Even when a certified lifeguard is present, the provider or substitute shall retain responsibility for appropriate supervision of children during a swimming or wading activity.
D. The provider or substitute may not permit a child in care to use a pool, such as a fill and drain molded plastic or inflatable pool, which does not have an operable circulation system approved by the local health department.
Unregistered 10:29 AM 11-12-2007
It has been proven by studies that most Playground injuries result from falls to surface. This report has been taken from the NEISS (National Electronic Injury Surveilance System) and used to create the CPSC handbook for playground safety. You should use an approved safety surface to protect against falls. Dirt and grass are not safety surfaces. Something that has been tested and passed to not exceed 200gs when falling from the highest point will help prevent life threatening injuries.
georgefradford 12:35 AM 04-23-2014
All the safety measure should taken. Playground surface should be safe for children's. If they fall from height, they do not hurt them. No spikes are used in the playgrounds. DCMsurfaces does playground installation and they knows the safety measure. I have seen their work in some public and school playgrounds.
Second Home 06:40 AM 04-23-2014
I had been told my lic specialist that you do not have to put anything special under the play area or swingset , but if I did decide to put down soft material then it would need to be at least 12 inches deep . This is not listed in the regs but what I have been told .
sarah33 11:31 AM 04-23-2014
I was also told by my MD licensing specialist that grass/dirt were just fine. I was concerned that the regular mulch and rubber mulch would be choking hazards. Very happy to just have grass/dirt for the kids. I have a Step 2 large play set, and I am not worried about the kids at all. The slide is only about 3-4 feet off the ground.
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