Inflatable bounce houses add a component of fun and excitement at any outdoor event or gathering. These fanciful bounce houses, sometimes referred to as moonwalks, bouncers, or jump houses, are constructed of durable materials to last many years. The bright colors and styles take fun for children to a whole new level.
Bounce houses are not without risks, however. A study conducted in 2012 showed that there were over 11,000 reported injuries of children in bounce houses in 2010, when the study data was collected. This was significantly higher than in years past. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) also reported over 1000 injuries to children caused by inflatable toys. Experts agree that the actual injury rates are higher due to underreporting.
Bounce houses that are designed with safety in mind can mitigate many of the risks associated with their use. Proper staking and setup are critical in keeping injuries to a minimum, and best practices such as adult supervision and following bounce house manufacturer weight and capacity limits also works toward preventing injury. Not all bounce houses are built the same; the construction methods and accessories are important factors when it comes to safety. Here is a look at some of the primary safety features used by the leading commercial bounce house manufacturers in the United States.
Bounce House Safety Features
According to Jumpwithjoy, There are a number of features one should look for when selecting a commercial grade bounce house or jump castle. Moonwalk rental businesses that provide bouncers for outdoor events need to protect their investment and reduce the possibility of liability if someone is injured. The following safety features can help reduce injuries in children:
Mesh screening – on inexpensive bounce houses, manufacturers sometimes cut corners by using mesh panels that have large openings. This can catch little fingers and toes, leading to injuries. The best commercial bounce houses and jumpers on the market use fine mesh panels on their bouncers; this helps to reduce the chance of fingers getting caught in the window openings.
Extra anchor points – on the exterior of industrial bounce houses, there are attachment points for ground anchors. The best bounce houses have multiple anchor points, helping to keep the bouncer in place during play and during inclement weather conditions like wind. The bigger the bounce house, the more anchor points needed for stability. Anchoring the bounce house before use is a critical safety step; most bounce house manufacturers will provide anchoring instructions and the stakes needed to set the bouncer up properly.
Heavy-duty materials and construction – this aspect may be easy to overlook, but the quality of the materials and fabrication that go into commercial-grade bounce houses strongly influence the overall safety of the inflatable. Tough vinyl fabric, reinforced stitching, and blowout panels all work together to reduce the chances of injury.
Other Bounce House Safety Considerations
There are several other steps bounce house rental companies and parents can take to ensure fun activity without injury. These include:
Following manufacturer set-up recommendations
Adhering to capacity and weight limit guidelines provided by the bounce house manufacturer
Discontinuing use in wet weather to prevent slip-and-fall injuries
Having adult supervision at all times
Keeping children grouped by size or age; young ones with young ones or teenagers with other teenagers. This can reduce collision injuries when young people of different sizes and weights are kept separate in the bounce house.