Bouncy Castle Health and Safety

Bouncy Castle Health and Safety

How to enjoy and have fun with bouncy castles while staying safe

Bouncy castles are a hit with children and adults at certain events, and the appropriate type is certain to be a very popular attraction. That said, it’s important to use bouncy castles properly and observe certain safety procedures so everyone using them can enjoy themselves without being exposed to undue risks.

The right type

Using the right type of bouncy castle is imperative in terms of the age group and likely numbers of those using it. Choose one that is suitable for the age group, and don’t be tempted to let children of an excessively wide age range use the same one; adults and children certainly shouldn’t be using the same bouncy castle. You can choose exactly what type you require from a company offering bouncy castles for hire; they’ll have various castles featured with details of appropriate age range and size.

Safety procedures

Whether using your own castle or hiring one, check for the following: Appropriate site - consider whereabouts the bouncy castle will be sited and ensure there is room for proper anchorage and safe use of supply equipment such as compressor cabling. Anchorage - very important to ensure secure and safe anchoring using stakes ideally at least one foot long. Supervision - ensure children are supervised at all times by a responsible adult when using the castle; this person should be a ‘dedicated’ supervisor and not someone nearby manning a payment booth or performing some other duty. Mixing age ranges - along with not mixing adults and children on the same bouncy castle, keep use to specific age ranges and perhaps operate a rota system for use of the castle by certain age range groupings. User behaviour - don’t let users onto the bouncy castle with items likely to cause injury such as shoes, buckles and sharp jewellery. Don’t let children and other users engage in dangerous behaviour such as horseplay, trying acrobatics and climbing up the walls of the castle. Safety mats - proper impact absorbing mats should be situated at the open side of the bouncy castle. Insurance - ensure you’re properly insured for the use of a bouncy castle.

Expert bouncy castle hirers

By using the services of a specialist bouncy castle hire company you’ll be far more likely to have a bouncy castle at your event that is appropriate for your visitors. As part of their service, they’ll set the castle up properly and safely and will be properly insured.

What to look for in a hirer

Meeting your needs - their website should provide full descriptions and photos of the range of bouncy castles for hire, and they should be happy to advise on what to choose based on your requirements and the setting. Accreditations - an established hirer should adhere to and implement a strict code of safety. Look for the following accreditations: BIHA (British Inflatables Hire Alliance) - the UK’s largest trade group and a sign that a company is an ‘official’ and committed leisure services company. Members adhere to a code of contact. PIPA - an inspection scheme specific to the play industry where participating hire companies have their bouncy castles inspected annually with the inspection history recorded on a database. Through using the bouncy castle’s unique number, the user can check on the inspection status of the equipment. The hirer should be happy to provide you with the PIPA tag number for the bouncy castle you hire so you can check its inspection status if you so wish. The PIPA scheme is recognised as a key safety measure and is fully endorsed by the Health and Safety Executive. PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) for additional equipment such as electrically powered blowers and cabling; they should be safety tested regularly and carry PAT certification.

Insurance and setting up

A hirer should have high levels of insurance such as public liability and, along with providing a delivery, set up and dismantling service, should also provide written instructions as to the ongoing use and safety procedures applicable to the bouncy castle.