This summer is proving to be a watershed moment for the safety and regulation of the use of bouncy castles. The unsafe practices surrounding the use of these facilities (intended for fun) has resulted in the unnecessary deaths of children and jail time for those found guilty.
In recent months, we heard about the gross negligence manslaughter conviction of William and Shelby Thurston, following the death of Summer Grant in March 2016. Summer died in hospital after she was rescued from an inflatable bouncy castle which blew away with the child still inside. The couple were sentenced to three years jail time at Chelmsford Crown Court.
This sentence should have been a deterrent and sent out a clear message to anyone providing a bouncy castle to ensure that strict safety requirements are met.
Unfortunately, at the beginning of this month it was reported that another young girl died after being thrown from an inflatable trampoline which exploded on a beach, just south of Great Yarmouth in Norfolk. This tragedy has reportedly resulted in the call for an outright ban on bouncy castles while safety measures can be investigated.
Following the recent turn of events, it has also been reported that the HSE is looking at new measures to tighten up safety on fairground “bouncy castles” and inflatables. This could result in changes to the BS EN 14960, Inflatable play equipment. Safety requirements and test methods. CSC will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates.
These unfortunate incidents highlight the need for adequate risk assessments, safety checks by competent persons, safe systems of work, and stringent opening and closing safety checks. Factors such as equipment malfunction and poor weather conditions also need to be taken into account when planning events where bouncy castles are used.
To ensure that your business meets legal compliance, contact CSC today and our team of experts will be happy to provide assistance.