Table 3

Case-control studies

Title and authorPopulationMethod of data collectionConclusions
Chalmers D. Height and surfacing as risk factors for injury in falls from playground equipment. 199612110 cases playground injuries requiring medical attention.School staff/hospital records.The risk of injury increased with heights greater than 1.5 m (OR 4.14) and with non-IAS (OR 2.28). Falls from non-compliant equipment increased risk of injury.
Interview with child/parents
190 controls—fallen from equipment but no medical attention required.Site visits
Mowat DA et al. Case control study of risk factors for playground injuries among children in Kingston and area. 19981345 cases A&E attendance with playground injury.CHIRPP surveillance programme.Injury was associated with inappropriate surfaces (OR 21), appropriate surface of inadequate depth (OR 18.2) and inadequate guard rails (OR 6.7).
Telephone interview.
Safety audit data/hazard identification.
Age/sex matched controls non-injury and non-playground injury.
Macarthur C et al. Risk factors for severe injuries associated with falls from playground equipment. 200015A&E/Admissions Toronto Hospital for Sick Children after fall from playground equipment. 18 mth–14 yearsHospital records.Falls from >1.5 m had a 2-fold increased injury risk. As most children fell onto modern surfaces the role of surface was not evaluated.
Telephone interview.
Site visit.
Laforest et al. Severity of fall injuries on sand or grass in playgrounds. 200014930 children 1–14 y attending 2 A&E units after falling from play equipment.A&E database.Grass is not a safe surface for play equipment. The adjusted risk of an IAS >2–3 was 1.7 times higher on grass than sand.
Telephone questionnaire.
(91%) response.
Petridou et al. Injuries in public and private playgrounds: the relative contribution of structural, equipment and human factors. 200216777 injuries in public and private playgrounds in Athens.Injury surveillance in the Accident Department.2.2 times higher risk for an injury in public than in private playgrounds (95% confidence interval 1.61–3.07). With eight times higher odds for concussion.
Public playgrounds have more equipment, usually of greater height, with less resilient surfaces.