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6 Tips for Safer Playground Fun This Summer

An Iowa toddler visiting the park with her babysitter was rushed to the ER after getting second degree burns on her hands, stomach and legs from the hot playground slide. The slide was said to be a blistering 170 degrees when 18-month-old Madyson slid down it.

According to her babysitter, the tot was attempting to go down the slide on her stomach, feet first. She started screaming and holding herself off the slide — which is why they believe her hands were so badly injured — but then lost her balance and slid down the entire slide. She has golf ball-sized blisters on her hands and burns on her knees and stomach, too.

Local media tested the temperature on the plastic slide and discovered it was 163 degrees. Madyson’s mom, Nicole Hollingshead, hopes to warn parents to check playground equipment before letting their children play this summer, especially on hot, sunny days.

“It’s just terrible that something so tragic can happen to my baby girl in order to make other people aware, but if that’s what it has to take then I just want people to be aware when they go to the park, check out the slides,” she told KCCI8 Des Moines.

Being wary of heat is just one of the playground safety tips at KidsHealth.org. They also recommend that:

  • Parents choose safe playgrounds — those without broken equipment or flagrant safety violations.
  • Families never use play equipment when it’s wet, since water can make it slippery.
  • Kids avoid wearing drawstrings, purses, or necklaces that can get caught while playing.
  • Parents stick close to young kids while they play, since they might overestimate their abilities on the equipment.
  • Families move along if there are too many kids on the equipment.  Overcrowding can lead to accidents.
  • Avoid putting preschoolers on track rides, as they require significant upper body strength.

Read more about playground safety tips.

And for more on Madyson’s story, see CNN’s video below.

Photo: smile4camera, Flickr

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