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How are fall protection mats laid?

fall protection mats

fall protection mats

How are fall protection mats laid?

Fall protection cushions offer children safety when playing on the playground equipment on the playground or in the garden. Should they ever lose their balance or slip and fall, they will be cushioned by the rubber fall protection pads in the event of a fall. These mats are available in different colors and are therefore perfect for designing the underground on a playing surface.

The basics of laying

Fall protection pads are laid either on solid surfaces, such as terrace slabs and asphalt, or on drainable surfaces such as lawn, gravel and grit. The solid floor must be level and free of holes or other indentations. A sufficient gradient is also important.

If the fall protection pads have a maximum thickness of 30mm, they should only be positioned on asphalt, concrete or paving stones. Regardless of the surface, you should definitely pay attention to a water drainage option. In addition, all unevenness must be leveled out. Recesses, such as for playground equipment posts, can be easily cut out of the upholstery with a jigsaw.

ground and environment

The ground under the fall protection pad is usually a bound surface such as asphalt. In the implementation, however, construction is also often carried out on grit surfaces with a gravel substructure. Sand is rather unsuitable for positioning, as it can be washed out by the effects of water, creating cavities under the mats. A sensible fixation should always be done by gluing, either over the entire surface on bonded substrates or laterally on chipped surfaces.

By day fall protection mats are subject to natural expansion, upholstery that is not glued does not look good after a relatively short time. Here, however, the appearance is rather uninteresting. If the mats are not glued, there are dangerous tripping hazards and weeds can grow through the joints. If the weeds get through, this also takes up unnecessary time, since the fall protection pads then have to be cared for more frequently and intensively.

In general, the fall protection pads should be positioned within a radius of approx. 2 meters around the affected playground equipment, since in most cases a person who falls falls away from the equipment at a certain distance.

note slope

If the fall protection pads are to be installed on a non-permeable floor, it is important to ensure that there is a sufficient gradient so that rainwater can drain away reliably and no puddles form. With a drainable floor, it is not so bad if there is no slope, because the cushions are usually rain-permeable, so that the rainwater can drain through the plates in the floor.

Properly embarrassed

Many are unsure how to properly position fall protection panels so that they really protect children in the event of a fall while also allowing rainwater to drain away easily.

Create a laying plan

Creating an installation plan in advance makes positioning easier afterwards and gives an initial overview of how many panels are actually needed. The area to be provided with fall protection padding is measured and recorded in this plan. This works best on a squared sheet of paper.

Prepare the surface

A level and stable surface is required to position the mats. To border the area that is to be provided with the fall protection padding, an edging is suitable, which ensures that the padding does not slip later. It also prevents trip hazards, because the fall protection padding expands when it's warm and contracts when it's cold. The side protection prevents expansion and thus reduces the risk of injury.

Preparing the floor is particularly important for fall protection pads that are less than 30mm thick. Stronger rubber mats have more weight and can lie better on slightly uneven floors. The material that serves as a bed for the fall protection pads should also be compacted, as this prevents the surface from sinking irregularly.

Lay the fall protection mats

When positioning the fall protection pads, it is often useful to position them with an offset. An offset ensures more stability of the laid out area. If the surface is glued, you should always ensure that the rubber mats are not exposed to moisture for 24 hours so that the glue can dry completely.

Are there viable alternatives to fall protection mats?

Just as many still know from playgrounds that the playground equipment is in a large sandbox, it is rather unusual in new buildings these days. In principle, sand, gravel or mulch can be used as fall protection. However, there are extreme disadvantages compared to the fall protection pads.

On the one hand, the rubbers can be "played away". This means that the area does not always remain at ground level, but can in principle be distributed over the entire playground, since it is not a coherent mass. Holes can form, increasing the risk of injury. Foreign objects such as broken glass, dog droppings or sharp objects can also be difficult to detect in mulch or the like.