Signs for play areas
There is a legal requirement, under the Occupiers Liability Act 1957, 1984 to ensure that play areas have correct and adequate signage.
Signage can play an important role in providing information to users for the purposes of reporting accidents and damage.
Play Area signage should include
- Name of operator of the site
- Contact details to report damage or accidents. Where the authority has a permanent office this should include the telephone number. Where a clerk works from home the use of a telephone number may not be appropriate
- Location of nearest public telephone for contacting emergency services (Not essential)
- Pictogram "No Dog" signs are also strongly recommended
- Where there are overhead electric cables nearby "No Kite Flying" signs are recommended
- Where play area is near a road the use of Road Signs to warn motorists of the presence of a playground should be considered (contact your local Highways Authority for provision of these).
- Any notices regarding age of users should be carefully worded so that it does not imply that the area is safe for all users of that age. For instance a 12 year old may have the mental and physical capabilities of a three year old. Something that implies that the area is safe for all children over the age, say, of 7, would imply that it was also safe for this child and could result in litigation in the event of an accident. A bald statement such as "This area is to be used by children Under 8 only" is to be preferred.
A sample sign for skate parks is shown below: