Thursday, the Lubbock City Council approved new regulations on bounce houses, but decided stakes are needed to secure the inflatables. As we first told you Wednesday, the City of Lubbock Parks and Recreation Department suggested a ban on staking bounce houses into the ground at city parks.
The concern is damage to underground electrical and irrigation lines. After lots of discussion, including a news report on an incident in New Jersey where wind ripped a bounce house out of the ground, council decided to remove the ban on stakes from a new ordinance.
They did, however, approve changes that require a permit and keep bounce houses out of smaller, neighborhood parks. Council approved the change, six to one, with Councilman Victor Hernandez opposed.
"You're creating a situation where you're getting rid of a lot of opportunities for folks to have family gatherings in their neighborhoods and dislocating them to a further spot," Hernandez said.
Hernandez argued that many of the smaller parks in his district are not surrounded by homes and some have railroad tracks nearby. So, noise and crowds are not as much of an issue for those parks.
Permits would be paid by the person who puts up the bounce house. So, in most cases that would be the business owner. The permit should include locations in parks where bounce houses can be installed, to avoid hitting irrigation or power lines. It should also allow the city to keep track of who installs bounces houses, plus where and when, so they can be held more accountable for any damages.
The new park restrictions on bounce houses would be for neighborhood parks, or those parks that are between 2 and 10 acres. They would be allowed in larger community and regional parks. That drops the allowed park locations from about 80 to about 20.
Copyright 2011 KCBD. All rights reserved.