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The failure during use of a seat on a heavy-duty swing set at an elementary school was investigated. The seat contained a perforated reinforcing sheet metal (galvanized type 430 stainless steel) insert covered by an elastomeric material. Specimens of the reinforcing sheet from the failed seat were examined using SEM fractography, tensile and ductility tests, and spectrographic chemical analysis. The test results showed that the steel used did not meet the manufacturer's specifications for ductility (elongation). In addition, the small-diameter punched holes caused a stress concentration factor that aggravated the brittleness of the steel.

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