Ice Skating Safety: How to Prevent Skating Rink Accidents

Ice skating is a fun and enjoyable activity. Most people, children and adults alike, enjoy indoor ice skating, playing hockey and watching professional figure skaters dance on ice.

Owners of ice skating rinks go to great lengths to ensure that the rink is safe and secure. This has to be kept clean and well maintained at all times to prevent slips, falls and other accidents. Wet ice can be particularly slippery. Keeping the rink clean at all times is a big priority.

So, how do you keep an ice skating rink clean?

Keep the surface smooth

Skating rinks do get overused, leaving plenty of blade cuts on the ice. When this happens, it is time to smoothen the surface with a Zamboni. The Zamboni cleans up and cuts the ice during breaks of hockey games. It shaves off a layer of the ice rink and replaces it with water that will ultimately freeze and create a smooth surface. For small outdoor ice skating rinks, use a resurfacer and add a thin layer of hot water to smoothen the surface.

Clean the surface

When the ice skating rink still has a smooth surface but has accumulated a lot of tiny particles and small debris, a ride-on cleaner or sweeper will come in handy. The equipment helps in sweeping off snow, tiny pebbles and dirt inside the rink. The sweeper is used before the Zamboni to make sure that there is no debris left before adding up a new layer of ice.

Set the right temperature

Maintaining a good ice skating rink also means keeping it at an ideal temperature. For indoor ice skating rinks, the surface should be about 24 to 26 degrees Fahrenheit or about -4 degrees Celsius. The indoor temperature should be 63 degrees Fahrenheit or 17 degrees Celsius. The humidity should be at about 30%.

Setting the right temperature is important to maintain the quality of ice. For outdoor ice skating rinks where the temperature is unstable, the best time to build your own backyard ice skating is days leading up to the first freeze. Start building the rink when the temperature drops below 36 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fix the cracks and holes

Cracks in the ice

Maintaining an outdoor ice skating rink would be challenging because of the unstable weather. There will come a time when the ice will have holes and cracks. To fix these problems, gather some ice shavings and snow and fill every crack and hole.

After this, put a light coat of water over the cracks, smooth it over and let it freeze. The water should be warm so it can form a solid bond with the new ice and not create a separate layer that would easily be chipped out.

Holes and cracks are dangerous for skaters because these can cause them to trip or fall. Besides injuring their feet, they can also hurt others because they are wearing very sharp, steel ice skates.

Maintaining the quality of an ice skating rink entails a lot of hard work. But not to worry because there are tools and machines readily available that would make the job done faster and more efficient.