Posts in Category: rubber mulch

Is Rubber Mulch Safe to Use in Playgrounds

It’s not surprising that almost every kid will want to go to the playground everyday and play on the swings and slide along with the other kids. But there will be accidents, kids falling off, running around and stumbling, which would result to them bruising a knee or spraining themselves. To help reduce the number of kids being hurt in playgrounds, rubber mulch has been introduced into playgrounds and set up as a layer over the concrete. These act as a cushion to shield kids from the hard surface. However, many started to take more notice in this black layer where kids play and question the safety of it to the health of the children.

recycled playground mulch

garden mulch

Mothers have gone against the use of this mulch stating that when their kids come home, their clothes and skin are stained black from the tire shredding. Some very young kids would even attempt to put the material in their mouths and mothers have the challenge of watching theme and making sure they don’t do such a thing.

The use of rubber mulch in certain areas of the city, especially children’s playgrounds has become a popular way of giving a safe surface for the kids to play on. But the parents said that they don’t want their children to be exposed to any harmful chemicals which are found in the rubber.

They state that by simply shredding the tires and layering them on the surface doesn’t remove the chemicals. Parents just don’t want their children to be playing anywhere near something harmful and want the rubber to be swapped with another material.

Multiples studies have already been conducted to see if there are any negative effects of rubber mulch to our health. So far, no harmful effect of rubber mulch has been found. However, there are a number of toxicologists and doctors who go against this study and say that it was poorly conducted with the lack of data and unclear conclusion of the safety of using rubber mulch.

There is some research conducted that has found some carcinogens inside the rubber. However, low exposure to this isn’t harmful to humans. But since children don’t have a strong system compared to adults, and that they usually plant their faces onto the layers and could end up getting some in their mouth, it might pose a threat to their health.

Over the years, a lot of research has been done to really see if rubber mulch is harmful or not to our health. The problem is none of these states that mulch is “safe” or “harmful”. So there is no definitive answer. It is all up to the parents what they decide is right for their children’s health.

Since research is lacking and so is the support to remove the mulch as well as the costs, the material still remains in children’s playground and continued to be used in landscaping and gardening purposes. Those who didn’t like the mulch simply had their children go play somewhere else just to be on the safe side.