Recommended Sleeping Arrangements for Summer Camps

Though sleeping bags and mats are used, cots are a better option for several reasons. They can be more reassuring to first-time campers as they have more of a bed-like feel and tend to be more comfortable than sleeping on the ground.

Cleanliness Tips:

All cots, beds, mats, linens and pillows used for sleeping or napping should be maintained in a sanitary manner. They should be covered and constructed with an impervious, easily clean-able material. If mattresses are being used, they must be covered in a material that is water repellant, easily cleaned and meets federal flammability standards or have a separate mattress cover that meets all of these regulations. Unless washed and sanitized between each use, all individual mats, cots, linens and pillows should be labeled with identifying information. They should also be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized prior to being used by another camper.

All sheets and blankets should be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized a minimum of once per week or anytime the surface becomes noticeably soiled. If linens are left on mats or cots, they need to be stored so that they do not come into contact with the sleeping surface of the mat or cot next to them. If the mats or cots become visibly soiled, they need to be cleaned immediately. When not in use, clean sheets, blankets, pillows, mats or cots should not be stored in a restroom.

In other words, all articles of bedding that are provided by the camp need to be kept clean and in good condition. All linens need to be changed at least once a week (more often if they become soiled) or if there is a new camper that will be using them.

Arrangement Tips:

Each bed or cot that will be occupied by a camper should be provided with one (1) each of the following: sheet, pillow, pillowcase and blanket. This is not required if the campers will be providing their own sleeping bag.

If a bed, bunk or cot is provided by the camp then they should be spaced so that they do not obstruct the cabin entrance or exit. For each camper, a minimum of 30 square feet should be provided in all structures used for sleeping and should be designed so that there is a minimum of 2 feet of separation between all beds, cots or sleeping bags. They should also be placed so that the heads of campers are at least 6 feet apart.

Mary J. Gibson

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