Playground safety

Information about injury prevention and sports and recreation safety for children


Injuries at home and at play are not accidents. They can be prevented. CDC states that each year in the United States, emergency departments (EDs) treat more than 200,000 children ages 14 and younger for playground-related injuries. More than 20,000 of these children are treated for a traumatic brain injury (TBI), including concussion.

  • About 56% of playground-related injuries that are treated in EDs are fractures and contusions/abrasions.
  • About 75% of injuries related to playground equipment occur on public playgrounds. Most occur at a place of recreation or school.
  • The overall rate of ED visits for playground-related TBI has significantly increased in recent years (2005-2013).
  • About two-thirds of playground-related TBIs occurred at school and places or recreation or sports and often involved monkey bars, climbing equipment, or swings.
  • Most ED visits for playground-related TBIs occur during weekdays, Monday through Friday.
  • Playground-related TBI ED visits occurred frequently during the months of April, May, and September.

Source: Playground Safety (PDF), CDC

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