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FibarSystems | News & Links


Navigating Playground Surfacing: Making Smart Choices for Safety, Fun and Learning
By Tom Norquist, IPEMA
School starts in September, and that signals the official end to summer for all school-aged children. Though some may think this would lead to a drop in community park and playground attendance, some playgrounds will actually increase in attendance, due to shared programs with schools. 

Is It Really Engineered Wood Fiber?
How to know it’s the “real deal”
By Jack Fry
Over the last 20 years, engineered wood fiber has been the most utilized surfacing in the commercial playground industry.  It is very affordable, will last for years and meets basic ADA accessibility needs.  Due to its popularity, there are numerous sources producing engineered wood fiber.  Unfortunately, there are also a lot of companies producing similar wood playground surfacing that is either sub-par material or simply wood chips or mulch. READ MORE

What We Don’t Understand About
Playground Surfacing

By: Frances Wallach, Ed.D.
We have, since 1981, had a set of federal guidelines, The Handbook for Public Playground Safety (Handbook), which pointed out that the major cause of children’s injuries on the playground was from falls onto the surface underneath the equipment on which they were playing. READ MORE

Regular Playground Maintenance
and Inspection

Kenneth Kutska, CPRP, CPSI
Reprinted from Today's Playground |
Each year, more than 200,000 children are injured on playgrounds. Most of these injuries could have been prevented. The National Playground Safety Institute (NPSI) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) have created a checklist for hidden hazards in playground environments. READ MORE

Playground Best Practices
11 steps to a successful playground
By Monty Christiansen, CPSI
The much-debated (and sometimes maligned) term “best practices” refers, at least in my mind, to those practices that have produced outstanding results for folks I consider to be excellent playground providers. If you’re looking to build, retrofit, or simply improve your current playground experience, I encourage you to consider utilizing these 11 “best practices”―they have proven very successful. READ MORE

The Chill Effect – Winter tips for playground surfaces
By Kaisja Clark, Playground Magazine
Anything a city, town, municipality, school, day care or any other entity that owns a playground used by the public can do to prevent injuries to a child is a good thing. With more than 200,000 kids heading to emergency rooms after playground falls each year, it’s no secret that playgrounds need good equipment and suitable safety surfacing. READ MORE

Are Poured in Place Playground
Surfaces Safe?

By David Spease, ASLA, CPSI
The State of California Integrated Waste Management Board encourages the use of California recycled tires by promoting the development of recycled-content products derived from waste tires products and by providing grants to promote use of the products.  They provide two grant programs for playgrounds and related recreational surfacing.  One grant is for Park accessibility and the other is for Playground Safety.  READ MORE ________________________________________

Playgrounds: They're safer but still can
be dangerous

By Liz Szabo, USA TODAY
The Playgrounds have come a long way from the asphalt jungle gyms of the 1960s and 1970s. Monkey bars and hot metal slides have virtually disappeared. They've been replaced by colorful plastic castles with guardrails and
ramps and rounded edges.

The effect of safer play equipment on playground injury rates among school children
Andrew W. Howard, Colin MacArthur, Andrew Willan,
Linda Rothman, Alexandra Moses-McKeag, Alison K. MacPherson

Background: Changes to Canadian Standards Association (CSA) standards for playground equipment prompted the removal of hazardous equipment from 136 elementary schools in Toronto. We conducted a study to determine whether applying these new standards and replacing unsafe playground equipment with safe equipment reduced the number of school playground injuries. READ MORE

Comparison Table of CSA Z614 Standard Requirements
Reliable Reporting
This comparison table represents the authors’ opinion on the significant changes between the 2007, 2003, 1998 and 1990 editions of the CSA Z614 Standard. READ MORE

Playgrounds in the Nation’s Largest School Districts
Henderson Consulting Services, Inc.
This report summarizes the results of a survey of playgrounds and playground planning in the nation’s largest school districts. The survey was conducted among school districts with the twenty five largest student populations. Contact Henderson Consulting Services Inc. for the complete report.

Playgrounds in the Nation’s Largest Urban Park Districts
Henderson Consulting Services, Inc.
This report summarizes the results of a survey of playgrounds and playground planning in the nation’s largest urban park districts. The survey was conducted among park districts in the country’s twenty five largest population centers. Contact Henderson Consulting Services Inc. for the complete report.



1. ASTM International (ASTM)
100 Barr Harbor Drive, West Conshohocken, PA 19428-2959
Phone: 610-832-9585 Fax: 610-832-9555 Email:

i. Playground Surfacing
Staff Manager: Christi Basile
Phone: 610-832-9728 Fax: 610- 834-0666

Surfacing Subcommittee Chair: 
George Sushinsky
Phone: 301-424-0825 

i. Publications:
ASTM F 2223
(Last Revison Date 2009) – Standard Guide for ASTM Standards on Playground Surfacing ($30.00)
ASTM F 1292 (Last Revision Date 2009) - Standard Specification for Impact Attenuation of Surface Systems Under and Around Playground Equipment. ($53.00)
ASTM F 1951 (Last Revision Date 2009) - Standard Specification for Determination of Accessibility of Surface Systems Under and Around Playground Equipment. ($38.00)
ASTM F 2075 (Last Revision Date 2010) – Standard Specification for Engineered Wood Fiber for Use as a Playground Safety Surface Under and Around Playground Equipment. ($38.00)

ii. Public Playground Equipment
Director, TOC Division, Committee on Consumer Products: Len Morrissey
Phone: 610-832-9719 Fax: 610-832-9666
Committee Chairperson: Ken Kutska
Phone: 541-312-8826 Email:

ASTM F1487
(Last Revision Date 2007) - Standard Consumer Safety Performance for Play Equipment for Public Use ($65.00)
ASTM F1918 (Last Revision Date 2004) – Standard Safety Performance Specification for Soft Contained Play Equipment ($53.00)
ASTM F 2373 (Last Revision Date 2008) – Standard Consumer Safety Performance Specification for Public Use Play Equipment for Children 6 months through 23 months ($54.00)
Any of these Standards can be downloaded from ASTM’s website,, using a credit card for payment of the charge shown in parentheses.

2. U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
Washington, DC 20207
Contact Person: Ian Hall
Phone: (301) 424-6421, Ext. 122
Fax: 301-413-7107
CPSC General Phone Number: 800-872-2253

Publications are available free from the CPSC using the website shown or by writing to the CPSC at the above address:
CPSC Handbook for Public Playground Safety (2008)
Public Playground Safety Checklist (Document No. 327)
Home Playground Safety Checklist


3. National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA)
22377 Belmont Ridge Road, Ashburn, VA 20148
Executive Director: Barbara Tulipane
Phone: 703-858-0784 Fax: 703-858-0794


4. National Playground Safety Institute (NPSI) Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) Certification Course
A 2-day course followed by an optional examination. The recommended price for this course is $380 plus $100 for the exam, subject to regional adjustment. This course is administered by NRPA.
Contact your local Park & Recreation Association or Beth Wickline, Specialty Certification Manager, Playground Safety Program
Phone: 703-858-2148 Fax: 703-858-0794


5. International Play Equipment Manufacturers Association (IPEMA)
1924 North Second Street, Harrisburg, PA 17102
Executive Director: Denise Calabrese
Phone: 1-888-944-7362 or 717-238-1744
Fax: 717-238-9985
IPEMA provides third party certification for surfacing products and playground equipment.


6. KaBOOM!
4455 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite B100, Washington DC 20008
Director of Operations for Project Management:
David Flanigan 
Phone: 202-464-4064

Host a PlayDay

Our Vision: A great place to play within walking distance of every child in America. Visit to learn more!
Plan your Play Day Today!
To ensure that kids across the country get active and playful, national non-profit KaBOOM! is kicking-off the second annual KaBOOM! Play Days presented by Mott’s. KaBOOM! Play Days encourage communities to come together for fun activities and to improve local parks and playgrounds. KaBOOM! Play Days run from September 18 – September 26, but event planning starts now.

KaBOOM! and Let's Play logos

Attention all playground owners!
Thanks to generous support from Dr Pepper Snapple Group, KaBOOM! will be awarding grants of $750 each to communities this year who wish to make their playgrounds cleaner, safer and more inviting. Act now so you can receive one of these sought after grants.


KaBOOM! CEO & Founder shares his story — Darell Hammond overcame seemingly insurmountable odds and built one of the most successful nonprofits in our nation’s history. Read about his book.



7. United States Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board)
1331 “F” Street NW, Suite 1000,
Washington, DC 20004-1111
Contact: Peggy Greenwell
Direct Phone: 202-272-0017
202-272-0080 (v)
202-272-0082 (TTY)
202-272-0081 (fax)
800- 872-2252 (v)
800-993-2822 (TTY)
Link to the Access Board’s play guide:
Call for technical assistance on the ADA/ABA Accessibility Guidelines for Play Areas. The hotline is available Monday-Friday 10 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. ET . Paper copies are also available for all play area accessibility guidelines documents found on the website.



8. National Program for Playground Safety
University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA 50614-0618
Contact: Donna Thompson
Phone: 319-273-7529 or 800-554-7529
Fax: 319-273-7308
For copies of the National Action Plan for the Prevention of Playground Injuries or other general information on playground safety, contact the above. NPPS also provides online programs for certification for playground inspectors and supervision.


9. International Playground Contractors Association
P.O. Box 2364, Salt Lake City, UT 84110
Executive Director: Sylvia Salazar
Phone: 888-908-9519
Fax: 801-355-2788
The International Playground Contractors Association is a worldwide partnership formed to contribute to the advancement of the playground building industry by promoting playground installation as a legitimate contracting profession within the playground industry since 1997.   An organization (not just for contractors), NPCAI has a monthly publication with news of industry updates.


10. Playground Magazine
360 B Street, Idaho Falls, ID 83402
Contact: Lane Lindstrom, Editor
Phone: 208-542-2234 Fax: 208-522-5241
Publication dedicated to educating its readers on safety, design, structures and industry trends and issues. Members of NPCAI automatically receive a subscription to Playground free of charge.


The Fibar Group LLC is a member of IPEMA, the International Play Equipment Manufacturers Association. IPEMA is a member-driven organization whose mission is to assist in providing creative, fun, and safe play environments for children.






Get a price quote now! Contact the experts in Playground Safety Surfaces today!

Call us at 800.342.2721 or send us your request