Birthday parties have been joy of our children’s lives from the cake, to presents and the ever so frightening bouncy house that have become very popular in recent years. While many parents find comfort in the padding and safety features of the inflatable toys, others are not so sure. So how safe are these blow up houses?
There are basic safety rules to follow, including weight limits and occupancy restrictions. If these two keys rules are not appropriately followed, they may be headed straight to injury.
This summer, there was a highly publicized story of a woman and 12 children injured when a gust of wind in New York lifted the inflatable bouncy house into the air. There have also been other reports of the inflatable jumpy toys collapsing under too much weight.
Then of course, there are just accidents; children running into each other inside the house, slipping and falling, having trouble getting out and so forth.
A report from the Consumer Product Safety Commission released in 2005 stated that the amount of injuries at emergency rooms from 1997 to 2004, were linked to the growing popularity of the inflatable houses.
The good news is that these types of child injuries can be prevented by proper adult supervision, appropriate anchoring and choosing to use these toys when the weather permits.
10 Tips to Have a Safe Bouncy Experience
- Supervise. Watch your kids closely.
- Make sure the rental company that you hire is insured.
- Assure that the unit is properly weighted down to the ground – double or triple check!
- The unit must be properly inflated, with no rips or holes.
- The operator must cover all operating and safety procedures verbally as well as displaying printed instructions.
- Make sure there is no part of the house sagging so that the children do not trip.
- Do not let too many children in the house at once.
- Do not let tired or grumpy children in the house. This could be a recipe for disaster.
- Put children in the house with the same size children.
- Turn of the unit when the weather does not permit its use.