Modifying the steam train to prevent climbing may effectively change thedefinition of the train from a play component to an historical interpretive exhibitand justify the application of the 2012 ADA Standards for Accessible Design forelements other than play areas.Regardless of the definition of the train as either a play component or ahistorical interpretive display, safety and access must be addressed. This issuemust be considered and addressed by legal counsel.
Using the standards found in the playground safety legislation enacted by theState of California, the steam train contains many opportunities for injury.
Head entrapment, whereby the small body of a child passes feet firstthrough an opening only to have the head fails to pass through can causestrangulation and death.
Protruding features, if fallen on or against, can cause serious injury toeyes and other body parts.
Vertical angles formed by exposed mechanical parts can entrap heads,necks, or clothing parts and may cause strangulation.
The height of the train exceeds the capacity of the sand surfacing toprotect someone from serious injury in case of a fall from an elevatedplatform.
The railings currently along the top and sides of the train do not provideadequate safety or protection for children or adults who are encouragedto venture out onto these elements.
Recommendations and OptionsAccess to the Engine Compartment:
Option 1: If the steam train is deemed to be a play component, the standardsfor play areas contained in the ADA allow the use of a transfer system toprovide access to elevated play components in the engine compartment.Similar to a composite play structure found in many parks including Dennis theMenace Park, a transfer system consists of a platform that allows a person totransfer from a wheelchair to the transfer platform and pull themselves up aseries of steps to access an elevated deck. Such a system would allow a person
Dennis the Menace Park Steam Train page 2