When winter is upon us, the associated freezing conditions affect our play areas – not the equipment – but the surfacing material. What we use at Hibernia and Nottingham County Parks can and will freeze. We use a play mulch called Wood Carpet, which is certified for use under and around the apparatus that does a fantastic job in absorbing force from falls when the material is soft, malleable and not frozen. It is a great surface for shock absorption and by far the most economical to purchase. Unfortunately, it does come with the drawback of freezing during the winter and early spring.
So, at this time, we have no choice but to temporarily close the play areas with this surfacing when staff determines it to be frozen during routine inspections. However; several years ago, Warwick replaced their wood mulch with a crumb rubber material in a royal blue color to match the blue play apparatus. This material has many superior qualities, but the one that park visitors should most enjoy is the fact that it will not freeze.