Health and safety - inflatables
Bouncy castles and other play inflatables
Health and safety law applies to the supply, hire and use of inflatables for commercial purposes.
It does not apply for personal and home use.
Before hiring, supplying or using an inflatable to bounce or slide on, applying simple precautions can help prevent or avoid a serious incident.
Inflatables should be inspected regularly by a competent person (a competent person is someone with the required skills, knowledge and experience to manage health and safety).
Inflatables should be inspected:
- if new - before its first use
- after that on a yearly basis
- there are any changes to the inflatable
- a change in legislation
- concerns have been identified
If you are hiring an inflatable, it is recommended to ask for evidence that it has been inspected by a competent person.
There are two industry inspection schemes for inflatables:
- The PIPA scheme specifically covers inflatables devices that fall within the scope of the BS EN 14960, and they have guidance on the equipment PIPA inspect (PDF).
- The ADiPs scheme covers a wider range of inflatable play equipment as well as more traditional fairground rides.
Most play inflatables will have either a numbered PIPA tag or an ADiPs declaration of compliance (DoC) to show they comply with British Standard BS EN 14960. You may be risking people's safety if the inflatable does not have one of these.
If you are buying or hiring any inflatable for private or public use you should make sure it also has instructions on how to operate it safely.
Further information and guidance can be found on the HSE website.