Many parents are prepared for risks involved with their children playing on any playground, but there’s another risk associated in older playgrounds made of pressure treated wood, that most parents don’t know anything about. These wood playgrounds and de
Female Speaker: Vanessa and Kevin Barnes enjoy bringing their kids Riyana and Kevin, Jr. to the playground near their home. The kids run and play and just have a lot of fun. Kevin Barnes, Jr.: At the playground, it kinds of real fun, because I get to play with Riyana. Female Speaker: The children love this playground for obvious reasons. It's colorful, and has fun slides, swings and monkey bars. Mom and dad love it for another reason. It's made mostly of plastic, so they don't have to worry about splinters, weather cracks or rotted wood, and it's more forgiving than other materials if the children fall. Help in keep them safer. Kevin Barnes, Sr.: You have to supervise your kids as you can see some of the parts are not made for smaller kids. So you have to be there to supervise them, otherwise, it could be risky. Female Speaker: Many parents are prepared for risk involved with their children playing on playgrounds, but there is another risk associated in older playgrounds made of pressure treated wood, that most parents don't know anything about. These wood playgrounds and decks are laced with a chemical called CCA. Michael Shannon: Quite bluntly, what that means is this wood is loaded, impregnated with arsenic, which is a very toxic heavy metal. Female Speaker: When pressure-treated wood first came out, experts thought the arsenic with locked inside. But new studies show the arsenic does have a tendency to leach out of the wood into the environment, and on to children's hands. Michael Shannon: So the children who're just playing on a deck or a playground that's constructed with pressure-treated wood, have some possibility of getting the substance actually on their hands. Female Speaker: Does that mean parents should rush out to rip up their decks and destroy the older playgrounds? The experts say, no. Michael Shannon: There is not a recommendation to get rid of it. Rather, there is a recommendation that parents have a consciousness, recognize that this arsenic is potentially leachable, and take measures to minimize their children's exposure to that arsenic. Female Speaker: The best way to do that, it's one of the old standbys of parenting. Make sure your kids wash their hands after play time. Something, Vanessa's always done anyway. Vanessa Barnes: I try to explain to them, sometimes things are dirty and not everything is kept very clean. So it's important for hand washing.