The slide in a children’s playground in Ehime, not suitable for children, will be no more after injuries and safety worries.

At what age do playgrounds stop being amazing places of pure adrenaline-fuelled excitement? As a small child, the roundabout threatens to send you flying off, as the centrifugal force lifts your feet up and you hang on for dear life. The swings and see-saws do their level best to launch you into the sky, possibly never to return. And the slide? The slide is tall beyond compare, the ride down at breakneck speeds as the wind bats against your face…for about three seconds.

Then there comes a time when the slide becomes less exciting, the sense of speed dulls, and playgrounds become tame. But it wasn’t so for adventure-seekers in Ehime Prefecture on the island of Shikoku in Japan. Their 60-metre (200-foot) long slide in wet weather was enough to test the bravest soul. But no more.

We’ve previously reported on the popularity of videos of sliders shooting down the slide in rainy weather before skidding across the unforgiving ground at the bottom. Japanese TV even got in on the act, dubbing it “Japan’s most dangerous slide”.

▼ A Japanese TV personality doing one of the two things that Japanese TV personalities do best (alongside declaring how delicious whatever food they’re trying is): having pain inflicted on them for laughs.

But according to news reports, the slide, which has been shut down temporarily in the past, is now being closed for good. After a temporary closure it was reopened again but in April last year a two-year-old child using the slide hit their head on a railing, and the slide was once again closed. While it reopened again after that, the city of Imabari has decided that they can’t guarantee sliders’ safety and so the slide will no longer be open to thrill-seekers, and is to replaced by a climbing rope wall aimed at six- to twelve-year-olds, which is probably less likely to go viral. The city official responsible for the closure had this to say: “As a symbol of our region, it’s a pity it has to go. We did say we just wanted people to use it safely”.

When will people learn that playgrounds aren’t places for mucking about.

▼ The slide has been roped off for the time being but will soon be dismantled.

▼ For those who never got the chance to visit themselves, here’s a video capturing the excitement, and pain.

So since Japan’s most dangerous/amazing slide is out, what does that leave us playground aficionados? We could hunt down the creepy playgrounds that feature in photographer Kito Fujio’s work, or start a new hunt for Japan’s biggest roundabout. Or maybe befriend a sumo wrestler for some extreme see-saw madness, since the sumo wrestler who kept popping up on Google Maps would probably be game.

Source: Asahi Shinbun via Hachimakiko
Featured image: Twitter/@ninnikumukimuki