Inflatable bounce houses are popping up at almost every kid's backyard party. Keep young party goers safe and free from injury, while enjoying the party rentals.
Anchor with Stakes
Before setting up the bounce house, make sure that the ground is level and clear of any debris, pine cones, sticks or objects that could rip the material. Place it on a flat surface and include a tarp underneath, if setting the bounce house up on hard concrete or other hard surfaces.
Anchor the bounce house with metal stakes that are 18 inches long. Drive the stakes into the ground at a 45 degree angle to keep the bounce house secure. Check to see that this is done before the installers leave.
You don't want to find a stake in a vertical position, since it's too easy for the bounce house to lift up and detach from the ground.
Check the Weather Forecast
If the wind speed picks up to 19 miles an hour or a thunderstorm is on the way, turn off the bounce house motor. Don't worry about losing your rental deposit; keeping the kids injury-free is priceless. Move the kids to a safer indoor location.
Don't operate the bounce house in rain, because the surface gets too slippery. Re-inflate the bounce house and dry it completely before letting kids enter. They'll probably race to get back in, so be prepared to slow them down again.
A responsible adult should monitor the bounce house, preferably a parent attending the party. Let groups of kids enter by age and make sure there are no crazy stunts. It's dangerous for younger kids to jump with older kids because smaller children are more susceptible to injuries. Remove any child who becomes aggressive or bullies others.
Also ensure that all jumpers have removed their shoes and emptied their pockets. A shoe could accidentally become a harmful projectile if it flies from a jumper's foot.
Only allow a few kids in the bounce house so that no one "bounces out" of the entrance. Four or five kids at a time is a safe number. Feel free to limit the bounce time to a few minutes for each group if there's a long line.
If a child complains about an injury, tell them to exit the bounce house to get checked out by another adult. Don't assume they're fine if they look okay.
Bounce houses add an element of excitement to any party or children's event. Taking simple precautions ensures that kids can bounce to their hearts' content, safely.