How to Keep Playground Equipment Sanitary
Commercial playground equipment is valuable because it can help with physical and cognitive development. Yet its heavy use means the equipment can harbor disease-causing germs, thus inviting the need for regular sanitation. Read on to discover playground equipment sanitation tips.
Sanitize High Traffic Touchpoints
Cleaning all the equipment is the best way to keep a playground sanitary. Identify the equipment kids like to play with and wipe them down after use. You can focus on sanitizing these common touchpoints to save time. Touchpoints include monkey bars, exercise bars, and crawl tunnels. Don’t forget about sanitizing sitting areas and enclosed playing huts, too.
Kids take advantage of enclosed areas to play in, so you need to stay on top of their activities. Consider assigning people to watch the equipment and step in when cleaning is necessary. This can be one of the surest ways to stop germs from spreading.
Use Quality Cleaning Products
Playground equipment is susceptible to all kinds of grime, such as bird droppings and spills. You’ll need to regularly disinfect the playground equipment with a quality disinfectant. Find effective yet mild disinfectants to both keep your equipment clean and children safe. Avoid mixing different disinfectants, as this could be hazardous.
If you’d prefer, you could also use a mild liquid soap, sponge, and water to clean these spaces. Hose down the affected area and allow it to air dry before allowing kids back on the equipment.
You can also use vinegar, a bleach solution, or mold spray to clean mold and mildew. Vinegar is better suited for plastics, but you can use bleach or a mold spray for metals. Follow the manufacturers’ instructions when using them to avoid damaging your playsets. Only use either option at a time.
Promote Safety Messages
One of the best ways to keep your equipment sanitary is to help the kids stay clean. Depending on where your playground is located, you may be able to schedule a meeting with the parents in your area to discuss how to keep the playground clean.
Encourage parents to carry miniature first aid kits containing towelettes and disinfectants – or better yet, consider providing one at the playground location. Kids can be clumsy, and first aid should be easily accessible before blood spreads. Using the kit can prevent infections from spreading from the equipment to the kids.
You can also prepare sanitation messages and post them all around the playground. Create pictorial instructions detailing cleanliness measures and hang them on your equipment. That may make it easier for kids to be part of the playground’s cleanliness campaign.
Provide Sanitizing Stations
Germs can spread on the playground through touch. One of the best ways to combat germ spread is by encouraging regular hand washing.
Provide handwashing liquid in any restrooms located nearby. You can also create handwashing stations around the playground equipment. Such accessibility is convenient since the children won’t have to rush to the bathrooms whenever they need to wash their hands.
Ask Sick Visitors to Stay at Home
This may appear harsh, but it’s necessary. Sick kids can easily pass on sickness-causing germs when playing at a playground by touching the playsets. By asking them to stay home, you minimize the chances of germs getting on your equipment.
Show empathy when spreading this message. While many kids may want to play, there are understandable repercussions of bringing sick children to a playground. For example, germs on the equipment may aggravate a child’s illnesses. Since no parent wants their children’s condition to worsen, many should be willing to comply with your message.
Make Trash Bins Accessible
People often throw trash on or around playground equipment when they can’t find trash bins. Place trash receptacles at high-traffic points to reduce littering. Empty the bins throughout the day to maintain their accessibility. Some littering may still occur, but it won’t be as much. Reduced littering may help reduce overall playground contamination.
Always Keep Your Commercial Playground Equipment Clean
Sanitizing commercial playground equipment can help keep kids healthy. You don’t need to do much to keep your playsets clean. Just focus on high-traffic areas and educate parents on the importance of sanitization. Protect the leaders of tomorrow by giving them clean playgrounds.