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Playground cuts could cause more accidents

Posted in: Public Place Accidents 

With a newly proposed plan to save money by reducing “weekend park duties” in Brighton and Hove, the GMB union has argued that this will greatly increase the number of accident and compensation claims made on behalf of injured children. Brighton and Hove City Council has already paid out £23,500 to children injured in its playgrounds in the last five years. Its proposed budget aims to save £40,000 by cutting weekend inspections of playgrounds, known as “weekend park duties”.

In addition to compensation claims going up, the GMB union has also claimed that rubbish left in the park will go uncleared and that damaged playground equipment will go unreported – further contributing to injury rates. Labour suggests that cutting the tree-planting budget, which is greatly protected by Brighton and Hove Council as a Green-led council, should be the area to save money.

Still to be agreed by councillors

A recent investigation by BBC Sussex found that councils across Sussex paid out a total of £93,000 in compensation following the 140 accidents that occurred in their playgrounds over the last five years.  In comparison, Brighton and Hove City Council paid out £23,500 in the same time period.

A spokesperson from Brighton and Hove City Council said that Preston Park, city centre parks, and the cleaning of sports pavilions would be protected from weekend inspection cuts.  The budget, however, is still to be agreed by councillors.

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