The death of a six-year-old boy at a playground in South Australia serves as a tragic reminder of the need for regular safety inspections of playground equipment by councils, school staff, parents and members of the public. As ABC reported, Max Redden was playing with friends in the small township of Farrell Flat when an unsecured metal slippery dip overturned and hit him on the head, causing him to suffer serious head injuries and die at the scene before paramedics could arrive. The playground is on a public reserve run by the council of Goyder, and a council representative has stated that while the playground is rarely used, it is inspected every three months and no hazards had been reported at the time of the last inspection.
However, playground inspector Michael Kearnes said that the slippery dip was between twenty-five to thirty years old, and should have been removed a long time ago as it does not meet current national safety standards. According to Mr Kearnes, such standards denote that play equipment must be secured to the ground, and if that had been the case for this slide, the accident would not have happened. The park has been closed while the South Australian coroner is investigating the death, and Mayor Peter Mattey has confirmed that the rest of the play equipment will be examined.