In backyards across the country, trampolines have provided endless hours of fun for many a small child. Whether playing tag or popcorn, wrestling with friends, or attempting inadvisable stunts, kids have always found ways to enjoy these bouncy contraptions. In recent years, that enjoyment has spread from homes to trampoline parks, facilities that connect dozens of trampolines to form fields of springy canvas or polypropylene, often with the addition of ball pits, basketball hoops, and other features to add to the entertainment value.
Unfortunately, those who enjoy trampolines are also at risk for serious injury any time they use one, and those injuries are only more likely at a trampoline park. Though some facilities may argue that the dangers associated with trampolines are only to be expected, it is not uncommon for trampoline parks to fail to offer adequate protection for their patrons. If you believe that an injury you or a loved one sustained at a trampoline park could or should have been prevented, contact the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 515-3913 for a free consultation.
Common Injuries Sustained at Trampoline Parks
There are more than a few ways for children to be injured at trampoline parks, and many times those injuries demand immediate medical attention. A study led by Dr. Kathryn Kasmire, a researcher at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, looked at the frequency of injuries caused by trampoline accidents, both at home and at trampoline parks, and found signs that trampoline parks may pose even greater risks to children than trampolines at home.
According to the study, there were an average of more than 90,000 trampoline-related injuries in the U.S. per year from 2010 to 2014. Sprains and fractures were the most common types of injuries caused by trampoline use, no matter where the trampoline was located. There were, however, some differences in the types of injuries, depending on the location:
- Sprains were 61 percent more common at trampoline parks than at home trampolines
- Dislocated joints were more than twice as likely at trampoline parks
- Children younger than 6 were more likely to sustain fractures than teens or young adults
One reason for the apparent risks at these facilities is that there are far more children gathered together at a trampoline park than on a home trampoline. Research suggests that children are much more likely to be injured if they use the trampoline at the same time as others, which makes sense; the more kids there are flying through the air, the greater the odds that those kids will hit something. Regardless of the severity, be sure to have your child examined by a medical professional if they are injured at a trampoline park.
Causes of Action Against Trampoline Parks
Given the innate dangers of trampolines, it is all the more important that those associated with the operation of trampoline parks to take their responsibilities to customers seriously. Anyone operating a facility meant for use by the public is obligated to provide a reasonably safe environment; failure to do so could constitute negligence on their part and make them liable for injuries or damages.
There are a number of ways in which a party could have been negligent toward those playing at a trampoline park; those responsible could include the manufacturer of the trampoline, the owner of the property, or the operator of the business, depending on the circumstances. Some possible instance of negligence could be fairly obvious:
- Holes or tears in the trampoline material could be a significant safety hazard, as a child could potentially wind up with a limb trapped in the material, or even fall through it altogether while jumping. Any damaged parts should be repaired or replaced.
- Inadequate padding on walls, corners, and metal components can lead to serious impact-related injuries, including concussions, broken bones, or traumatic brain injuries.
- If an operator allows too many people on the trampolines at one time, the chances of a collision or fall can drastically increase.
- A lack of netting or fencing around the trampoline areas could allow someone to fall from the trampolines and hit the ground, causing a host of injuries.
In many instances, the first priority of the facility’s operators after an injury is to protect the company from legal fault. They may press you to sign a waiver or insist that they were not at fault. A qualified legal representative can help you determine whether you have a valid claim against the business.
If You were Hurt at a Trampoline Park in the Philadelphia-area, Our Attorneys Can Help
Though it may seem like harmless fun, it only takes a split second for your child’s playful romp across the trampolines to become the cause of a crippling accident. If you are faced with this dilemma, you may be at a loss as to how to seek justice for your family’s hardships. The skilled attorneys at the Reiff Law Firm have more than 40 years’ experience fighting for clients’ rights. If you would like a free consultation, call us today at (215) 515-3913.