As an event organiser, you are required under Health and Safety legislation, to ensure that the inflatables you hire or use are safe. The information below provides a summary of the requirements that you are required to meet pre-purchase/hire, before set up, and during the operation of the inflatable.
Inflatables of all kinds must be accompanied by the following:
- You must ensure that the inflatable has a numbered PIPA(Pertexa Inflatable Play Accreditation) tag, located on the side of the inflatable or an ADiPs Declaration of Compliance (DoC).
- Documentation from a competent inspection body confirming compliance with BS EN 14960.
- Operator's instructions, provided by the manufacture, illustrating how the inflatable can be used in a safe manner.
Before the inflatable is operated, you must ensure the following:
- The wind speed is tested with an anemometer. If this is not available, the inflatable should not be used outdoors. The windspeed should not exceed 24 mph (38 kmph).Please check operator's instructions as they may stipulate a lower windspeed for safe operation.
- When used outside, at least six anchor points must be used (check manufacturer instructions), and these must be evenly distributed, with at least one at the entrance. Ropes used must be in good condition and must not be improvised (e.g. bungee cords).Metal ground stakes at least 380 mm long and 16 mm wide should be used, with a rounded top. They should have a welded metal 'O' or 'D' ring fitted to the end
- Where ground stakes are not used, then a ballast, weighing at least 163kg (with suitable fixings for the rope attachment), should be used.
- Where an inflatable is to be used indoors, refer to the operator's manual regarding the necessary anchorage to maintain the shape of the device and prevent overturn.
Conduct these final checks prior to using your inflatable
- Ensure the correct pressure is achieved prior to use. Use a monometer to ensure a pressure of 10 millibars is achieved. Standing in one area is also considered acceptable to ensure correct pressurisation. If the structure is deformed in any way, it may indicate internal problems, which means you cannot use the inflatable
- Ensure a blower with the correct specification and output is used (this will be detailed in the operators manual). There should be a mesh guard covering the blade and it should be free of debris
- Ensure that the electric cord is not too long and the connection between the tube and blower is secure
- A final check of the structure should reveal no rips or holes in the fabric or seams.
- Check that the anchor points have not come loose during inflation.
- Place impact absorbing mats at the entrance of the inflatable.
Ensure that the following standards are maintained at all times:
- Do not under any circumstance, allow the user limit to be exceeded and do not exceed the user height limit. The maximum number of users can be found on the 'user limit' tag, attached to the inflatable
- Ensure users get off and on safely and that sharp or dangerous objects are emptied from pockets
- Do not allow users to climb or hang on the walls of the structure
- Check the wind speed at regular intervals
Additional information regarding the safe purchase, set-up and use of inflatables can be found on hse.gov.uk.