News: Trampoline safety key this summer
Story by Lance Cpl. Kasey Peacock
OKINAWA, Japan - As children take advantage of beautiful weather across Okinawa this summer, it is important to understand how to prevent injuries during outdoor recreation.
As children take advantage of beautiful weather across Okinawa this summer, it is important to understand how to prevent injuries during outdoor recreation.
The trampoline has been providing high-flying excitement for children and adults since its modernization in 1934. However, serious injuries can result from its use without proper precautions.
Common injuries resulting from trampoline accidents include bumps, bruises, knee injuries, head trauma, fractures and broken bones.
It is recommended parents provide strict safety rules for children when using a trampoline.
“The one key preventative measure which should never be overlooked is adult supervision,” said Daryl E. Avery, a supervisory safety and occupational specialist with the Marine Corps Base Installation Safety Office. “All parents should take the time to educate their kids about safety measures and help them understand life is more precious than a few minutes of risky fun.”
Trampolines must have all safety devices attached, including netting and padding. The trampoline must also be in a fenced backyard according to Tami Lucht, acting facilities chief, Department of Defense housing office at Kadena Air Base.
Another important step is to read the manufacturer’s safety and instruction manual before assembly.
“There is a very particular way to set up a trampoline,” said Gunnery Sgt. Christopher T. Manning, safety chief with Combat Logistics Regiment 37, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force. “Serious injury can result if it is not set up correctly.”
Establishing a one-child-at-a-time rule is a good way to prevent injury, as multiple jumpers increase the likelihood of collision injuries and accidental ejections, according to Avery.
“To help prevent accidents, I encourage children to jump more up and down than across the trampoline,” said Manning. “I have seen children hit objects and break arms on concrete from miscalculating their jumps.”
Be prepared for children to test the limits. Bravery can take over and they may try different things when parents are not around.
Jumping onto the trampoline from the ground or roof is not recommended. Using trampolines as a diving platform into a pool or hopping to the ground also puts children at risk for injury.
“I recommend trampolines only for children and adults who know their limits,” said Manning. “The trampoline can provide loads of summer fun for the whole family when used safely and correctly.”
For more information on trampoline safety guidelines and procedures, contact the Marine Corps Base Installation Safety Office at 645-2670.