While the majority of our hands-on fencing work at Utah Fence Warehouse comes in the residential sphere, where we’ve spent years providing Utah homeowners with high-quality wood, chain link, wrought iron and vinyl fences, we can also provide fencing supplies for other situations where there are fencing needs. One good example here is any kind of playground or similar outdoor child play space, whether in public areas, multi-family zones or others.
If you’re part of the team in charge of installing such a fence as part of a new playground or play center, there are a few considerations that will be very different from installing a residential fence. In this two-part blog series, we’ll go over each of these and the basic themes to keep in mind as you move through this process.
For starters, because they directly involve children, standards for playground spaces – maintained by ASTM International, or American Society for Testing and Materials – are strict and high. Fences installed in these areas need to be able to withstand major impact, for instance, including from nearby vehicles.
The guide also includes several other minimum requirements for fence and barriers in these areas. It covers all potential vehicle and participant intrusions, plus deals with child containment and entry or exit areas. It should be consulted in detail for any playground or related project you’re installing fencing for.
Why Quality Materials Matter
Now, ASTM standards do not specifically lay out recommended products or components for these installations. Rather, they leave these choices up to the operators of the space and their specification writers, based on the needs and products in question.
For several reasons, however, choosing only the highest-quality materials is of the utmost importance. The first and most vital is safety, which must be top of mind for any child play space at all times. In addition, quality materials will last longer and will not cause needs for constant repairs or upgrades – areas that also may present safety hazards in some cases.
And while a few different fence materials might work well for your playground area, the most common material we recommend is aluminum. It’s highly resistant to all forms of weather, from sunlight to moisture and corrosion risks.
Maybe more importantly, aluminum is also extremely strong and has what’s known as a high impact inhibitor value. This means that while it may bend upon certain major impacts, it will not snap and break like certain other materials, meaning it’s extremely safe. It also requires limited maintenance and meets all ASTM standards.
Within the playground, if you choose to install small shields or barrier areas, vinyl materials are often the best choice here.
For more on properly sourcing and installing a fence for a playground or child play area, or to learn about any of our fencing contractor services, speak to the staff at Utah Fence Warehouse today.