5 Steps to Ensure Bleacher Safety
Bleachers make sporting events so much more enjoyable to watch. Spectators get to enjoy comfortable seating so their focus stays on the competition. However, safety is an important issue when it comes to bleacher use. The following five steps will help keep your spectators safe at every match.
1. Assemble Bleachers Carefully
When assembling and installing new bleachers, it's important to be very cautious and ensure that each step is completely correctly. Pay close attention to fasteners, welds, and anchors to ensure that the bleachers are safely installed.
2. Know the Handrail Guidelines
Handrails should be added to any bleachers at heights above 30 inches. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the top of the guardrail should be at least 42 inches above the leading edge of the adjacent footboard, seat board or aisle. The openings in guardrails should prevent passage of a four-inch sphere, the approximate size of a baby's head
3. Fix or Replace Old Bleachers
Bleachers should be repaired or replaced if they become unsafe in any way. In addition, the CPSC recommendations address the open deck design commonly found in older bleachers. To prevent people from tripping or falling through, facilities should add risers in the spaces below the seat boards and above the footboards. The riser should close off enough of the opening in the deck to prevent the passage of a four-inch sphere.
4. Add Non-Skid Surfaces
Many bleachers feature a grooved surface that helps to eliminate water from puddling on top and creating a slippery surface. To further improve bleacher safety, you can add a non-skid surface to bleacher stairs and walkways.
5. Perform Regular Inspections
Facility managers should always inspect bleachers before and after use. In addition, the CPSC recommends and the National Fire Protection Association requires that bleachers be thoroughly inspected at least quarterly by trained personnel, and that any problems be corrected immediately.
Use these tips to ensure that all spectators are able to watch sporting events safely from the comfort of your bleachers.