Bouncy Castle Safety Tips
Bouncy castles and inflatable slides seem like fun, but injuries or even fatalities can happen if they are inproperly set up, anchored, operated or supervised.
Many companies throughout British Columbia offer air-inflated amusement (commonly referred to as "inflatables") for sale or for short term rental. These devices come in many shapes and sizes and may contain slides and or bouncing areas.
Is a permit required?
When these devices are used at public events such as school fairs, events or at venues where the general public has access, they must be operated by licensed contractors with the required permits from Technical Safety BC.
How to stay safe
When erecting and operating air-supported amusement devices, take the following precautions:
- Check that the inflatable fabric or material is flame resistant.
- Securely anchor the device to prevent displacement by wind or user activity.
- Ensure all warning signs are in place and clearly visible.
- Ensure that the unintended deflation of the air-supported structure due to power failure (either electrical or internal combustion generators) will not present a risk of injury to anyone on or inside the device. A procedure/plan should be in place to evacuate the device in the event of unintended deflation.
- Ensure that the device is supervised while in use. Supervisors should be checking that the maximum capacity of the device is not exceeded and that the users of the device meet manufacturer’s height /size criteria. Also, ensure operation of the device is terminated if winds exceed maximum stated by device manufacturer.
- Ensure internal combustion engines (generators) are located away from the air supported enclosure to prevent build up of carbon monoxide inside the enclosure.
- Ensure that electric blowers meet CSA electrical standards. Power cords and plugs should be in good repair and all electrical power supplies should be ground fault protected at the source.
- When buying or renting an inflatable device, request all of the manufacturer’s installation and operational information from your sales outlet or from your rental company at the time of purchase or rental.
By following all of the manufacturer’s requirements and properly supervising these types of devices when they are in use, they can and will provide the safe amusement they were designed for.