Hot playground equipment can cause burns on children


LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WWLP) – As the weather gets warmer and kids get out of camp, many people take children to the playground.

Some people remember how hot metal playground slides can get on a warm summer day. But while many metal slides were replaced by plastic ones.

The danger of being burned by playground equipment is still real.

22News spoke with Dr. Shauna Ejtehadi at Baystate Health Center who said slides aren’t the only issue.

“Plastic slides cause burns. The swings cause burns. The dark asphalt those can be hot as well,” she said.

On Wednesday temperatures rose to almost 90-degrees. 22News tested a plastic slide at Bliss Park in Longmeadow and the thermometer read 112-degrees.

22News asked a parent at the park to test the equipment and she was surprised by the results.

“Is that real? No. That’s crazy,” said Kara Chan of Longmeadow when the thermometer on the infant swing read 114-degrees.

The inside of the swing was a little better at 105-degrees when Chan tested it.

“Usually, I’ll put my hand to it and if it feels like it’s too hot then we’ll probably look for somewhere else in the shade,” said Chan.

Which is exactly what Doctor Ejtehadi recommends.

“Little kids don’t have as quick of reflexes and they can’t pull back as quickly from something that’s going to be hot,” she said.

“If it feels too warm to touch when you touch it, it’s going to be too warm for the kids.”

Doctor Ejtehadi said parents can take care of a first-degree burn at home by running it under cool water. She explained how to identify one.

“If there’s an area of redness and it stays there. It doesn’t go away after they’ve cooled off,” she told 22News.

But if the child’s skin is broken or has blisters, Ejtehadi said that’s a second-degree burn and needs to be taken care of at a hospital.

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