Splash pad too slippery?

Last updated 11:21 22/11/2012
pad

Slippery when wet: A sign at the new splash pad at Raumati’s Marine Gardens yesterday.

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Kapiti Observer

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Kapiti Coast District Council is eyeing safety improvements at Raumati's new Marine Gardens water feature amid concern over a slippery duck on its surface.

Community services group manager Tamsin Evans said the council was taking seriously reports that children had hurt themselves after slipping while playing on the new splash pad.

"We accept children will occasionally slip, while playing, especially in water but we want to make absolutely sure this facility is as safe as it can be."

Ms Evans said the council has had six complaints, with the concerns relating to grazes and bumps from slipping.

The new water play feature, installed as part of the playground upgrade, has a painted surface in the shape of a duck, to replicate the duck-shaped paddling pool it replaced.

Ms Evans said the paintwork was roughened to prevent it being slippery but needed to weather a little more.

While this happens the council had put up signs asking carers to supervise their children when they were playing on the splash pad, she said. The signs were erected yesterday, on either side of the pad.

The splash pad was opened to the community in October as part of the $500,000 upgrade of the gardens playground.

Ms Evans said the council is working with the supplier about the problem and as a last resort the water may be switched off temporarily for work to fix it.

"We really don't want to do this because the water feature is proving extremely popular. We've had hugely positive feedback from the community and only a small number of complaints."

Solutions could include adding another non-stick coat onto the paintwork on the splash pad.

"At the other end of the spectrum is sandblast the duck off and go back to bare concrete. We've got an investigation to do on those range of options, and see what we can put in place most effectively and quickly."

The feature complies with the New Zealand Playgrounds standard and the NZ standard for surface slip, Ms Evans said.

"It was tested again just last week by an independent contractor who specialises in anti-slip surfaces and was found to actually exceed requirements."

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