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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 June 2006, 05:24 GMT 06:24 UK
Child's Play
Swings are a playground favourite - but do children need more adventure?
If playgrounds do not become more adventurous, chidlren will become bored and seek our dangerous areas to play in instead.

That's the warning from one of the experts from Rospa - the Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents.

Rospa's remit is to prevent accidents - and it says that 38,000 children are injured in playgrounds every year already.

But their expert David Yearly claims that if play areas are not adventurous and exciting enough then children seek out uncontrolled, dangerous areas such as railway lines.

Rospa believes if children are to use play areas they should be stimulating and "as safe as necessary, not as safe as possible".

On Breakfast this morning

  • We talked to Lucy Lloyd of the National Family and Parenting Institute and Rob Wheway, advisor to the Child Accident Prevention Trust

    Rob emphasised that most parents accept that their children will get a few scrapes and bumps and said that they and the children want playgrounds to be exciting.

    As for the number of accidents at playgrounds, he said that there'd be even more accidents, if children were kept at home.

    According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents

  • More than 38,000 children are injured seriously enough on UK playgrounds each year to have to go to hospital.
  • That compares to around 30,000 children who are killed an injured on our roads.
  • But that's still tiny compared to the 880 thousand children who are hurt in accidents in the home every year

    David Yearley, Rospa's Play Safety Manager, says "We need to see exciting and stimulating play areas with high play value. These will contribute to the physical and psychological development of the child and discourage children from playing in dangerous places such as railway lines, river banks and alongside roads. Play areas should be as safe as necessary, but not as safe as possible.

    "Parents have to accept that children may get hurt while playing - more than 38,000 children are injured seriously enough on UK playgrounds each year to have to go to hospital. What we must do is try to ensure that those injuries are not too serious."

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    Our discussion on children's playgrounds

    BBC Breakfast


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