California says outdoor public playgrounds can reopen

in Community

Outdoor playgrounds in California can now reopen, although rules regarding face coverings and social distancing remain in place, the California Dept. of Public Health announced Tuesday.

Despite the guidance, some parks won’t reopen right away. The decision to move forward with opening playgrounds is up to local jurisdictions. The City of Redwood City announced it is not yet ready to reopen its playgrounds, with officials saying “we need some time to prepare for this important undertaking.”

“Based on the updated State health guidance, we’ll need to determine the number of people allowed at one time for each of our playgrounds, develop appropriate signage, designate waiting areas by each playground, mark spaces within playgrounds for distancing, establish equipment cleaning procedures, provide hygiene areas, and take other measures,” the city stated.

According to the state’s guidance, eating and drinking in the playground is prohibited to ensure that everyone over 2 years old wear face coverings over their mouth and nose, officials said.

The state also says children should wash or sanitize their hands before and after using the playground and be limited to 30 minutes per day when others are present. Elderly residents and persons with underlying medical conditions should avoid the playground when others are present.

For more information, visit the CDPH guidance on playgrounds here.

Photo of Magic Mountain Playground at Coyote Point courtesy of San Mateo County Parks