Playground Equipment Reopening Plan
The following procedures will be followed to clean and disinfect park playground equipment at Blackburn, Ivory Crockett, Glen, Larson, Lockwood, Margaret, McKee, Memorial and Southwest Parks in Webster Groves. The playground equipment at all parks consists of high contact, hard (steel/aluminum/plastic) surfaces. Based on use patterns of the playgrounds, the Blackburn, Ivory Crockett, Larson and Southwest playgrounds will be cleaned and/or disinfected three (3) times per week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the playgrounds at Glen, Lockwood, Margaret, McKee and Memorial will be cleaned and/or disinfected two (2) times per week on Tuesday and Thursday. There will be no cleaning/disinfecting performed on weekends and holidays. Frequency of cleaning may be increased or decreased by the City in the future based on usage patterns, further guidance from St. Louis County, the State of Missouri, or the CDC.
A. Inspection/Cleaning. Prior to disinfecting hard surfaces on playground equipment, all surfaces will be examined for noticeable/visual stains, dirt, or other foreign substances and cleaned as needed. Playground equipment surfaces that have noticeable/visible dirt or stains on the surface will be cleaned first with a soap/ water and a sponge or long handled brush. Surfaces will be rinsed as needed with cold water to remove soap residue. Alternately, a hose with nozzle, pressurized hand sprayer, or pressure washer may be used to help remove dirt or other stains from surfaces.
B. Playground Equipment Disinfection. After inspection and cleaning with soap/water as required, playground equipment will be disinfected using a hand-pressurized hand sprayer (1-2 gallon capacity) and a dilute solution of household bleach (i.e., Clorox or sodium hypochlorite) and water or other US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered disinfectants that are effective against SARS-CoV-2. Playgrounds will be closed during the cleaning/ disinfection operations until the process is completed, the equipment is dry, and the City cleaner/ disinfecting re-opens the playground.
1. The disinfecting solution will be mixed manually by City personnel using 1/3 cup of household bleach added to 1 gallon of cold water in the sprayer. Alternatively, the city may opt to use another registered disinfectant – either pre-mixed commercially or by the City.
2. The sprayer will be hand pressurized via pump and set to a fine mist. A battery-operated hand sprayer may also be used.
3. The operator/applier will wear necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect clothing and skin from exposure to the disinfectant mixture. This PPE includes: a mask or respirator, impermeable gloves, and safety glasses or goggles. Use of a TYVEK coverall is also recommended for protection against staining of clothing.
4. Disinfectant will be applied to hard metal and plastic surfaces of playground equipment in a fine mist. Take efforts to ensure that the disinfectant doesn’t puddle or pool on the equipment in order to prevent exposure of the solution to park patrons.
5. Allow the surfaces to air dry for at least 30 minutes. If surfaces are not dry to the touch in that timeframe, use of a mechanical/backpack blower may be used to accelerate drying. Use a hose or hand sprayer with cold water to rinse any areas either on the rubber surface where the disinfectant solution has puddled or on the equipment to further minimize exposure of liquid disinfectant.
6. Prior to re-opening the playground for use, the City will inspect equipment surfaces to ensure they are dry to the touch and no pools of concentrated disinfectant remain on either the equipment or ground area below. If so, these areas will be hand dried and or rinsed with cold water and dried to minimize the risk of exposure to park patrons.
7. Since playgrounds are located outside and exposed to sunlight, the UV light from the sun should also help minimize the risk of SARS-COV2 transmission from playground surfaces.
8. The City will post signage in the vicinity of the playground stating the frequency of cleaning and informing users that playground equipment should be sanitized before and after using. The sign will inform users that approved cleaners will be posted on the city’s website (www.desperesmo.org) and will provide some approved examples on the sign.
C. Operational Practices. To further help limit the risk of disease transmission, the City will limit use of playground equipment to daylight hours only (6 AM to one half hour after dusk, daily) and will encourage park patrons to use disposable disinfectant wipes or other suitable and commercially available/ registered disinfectant products to perform spot cleaning in areas of concern should they so desire. Face masks are required by visitors. Social distancing is required.