Safety Checks at DC Playgrounds Under Question After Boy Injured on Crumb Rubber Floor

There’s no hiding 5-year-old Sam loves playing at Washington D.C. parks, but his mother can’t help but think what if.

“He fell about two and a half feet and broke his leg,” Eliza Graham explained.

Sam fell on one of D.C.’s older poured-in-place (PIP) crumb rubber floor playgrounds.

“No one in the District can speak to whether these playgrounds meet fall safety standards,” the mother of three added.

PIP and crumb rubber were D.C.’s flooring of choice for parks until a moratorium last year for health and safety reasons. One of them being attenuation.

Dr. Diana Zuckerman is President of National Center for Health Research.

“As they get older they get harder,” she said. “It can be extremely dangerous even deadly if a child falls.”

Manufacturers push “Gmax” testing to evaluate if PIP playgrounds are soft enough. Seven On Your Side found out D.C.’s Department of General Services (DGS) has never tested its rubber playground floors.

“Playgrounds do not fall under the Gmax testing for us,” DGS Director Greer Gillis said during a public hearing recently. “That’s one of the things we want to do in regards to playgrounds.” […]

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