While trampoline parks may be increasing in popularity, and no doubt a very fun place to bounce around, trampoline parks are also very dangerous. Indeed, despite the fact that dozens of trampoline parks can be found throughout California, experts warn that the use of these facilities can lead to serious injuries, some of which may be catastrophic. If you are someone who has suffered a trampoline park injury, or if your child has suffered a trampoline park injury, working with an experienced injury attorney is strongly recommended. Our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at the offices of El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers are here to represent you and protect your rights.
What Is a Trampoline Park?
Trampolines have been a favorite recreational item for children and adults alike since their introduction in the 1930s. Not just for gymnasts, trampolines can be used to bounce, play, flip, tumble, and more. Realizing the attractiveness of trampolines and the potential profitability of putting a bunch in one space and charging consumers for use, trampoline parks have been popping up across the nation over the past decade. In addition to multiple trampolines, these parks also often feature foam pits, slacklines, climbing areas, toddler areas, and more.
The Dangers of Trampolines and Trampoline Parks
Even well-trained and highly skilled gymnasts suffer injuries when using trampolines or performing aerial tricks; when children attempt such feats–or even just bounce around–the risk of injury is high. To be sure, an article published is CBS News lists many of the horrifying and tragic injuries that have been reported in the past years at trampoline parks, including multiple deaths. In addition to fatal injuries, other reported injury types include:
- Head and traumatic brain injuries;
- Spinal cord injuries, including paralysis injuries;
- Bone fracture injuries;
- Sprains and strains;
- Dislocated shoulders, knees, and other joints;
- Crush injuries; and
Trampolines are so dangerous that long before trampoline parks experienced the popularity that they do today, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) was warning against them. Indeed, in 2000, the CPSC reported that trampoline-related injuries had almost tripled in the past decade, from about 37,500 reported injuries in 1991 to nearly 100,000 in 1999. From 2010 to 2014, there were nearly 92,000 emergency room visits related to trampoline use throughout the United States, according to a report published by Scientific American. The trend of serious injuries related to trampolines continues today, with the majority of those affected being young children.
How Trampoline Park Injuries Happen
Part of the risk in taking children to a trampoline park, or even using a trampoline yourself as an adult, is not just the fact that trampolines themselves can be dangerous, but that these facilities are often crowded. In fact, research shows that about three-fourths of trampoline-related injuries occur when there are multiple users of trampolines at one time. In addition to landing in an awkward position that leads to an injury following a jump or trick, bumping heads with another user, having another user fall on you, or being pushed off of a trampoline by another user, whether intentional or not, can all lead to serious injuries. The same article cited above in Scientific American explains that trampolines parks may be inherently more dangerous because children move throughout the park via the ability to jump from trampoline to trampoline, increasing their risk of bumping into other children.
The fact that trampoline parks are opening at a record rate, with more than 280 parks in 2014 compared to about 40 in 2011 nationwide, also explains the increase in the number of trampoline-related reported injuries.
Who’s Liable for a Trampoline Park Injury?
Suffering a serious injury at a trampoline park yourself, or knowing that your child has been severely harmed at a trampoline park, can be a very upsetting experience. In addition to the pain that you, your loved one, or your child may be suffering, your family may also be looking at high medical bills, lost wages, and short- or long-term disability. While it can be hard to think about liability and taking legal action in the midst of coping with the emotional and physical toll of a serious injury, it’s important that you meet with an experienced Los Angeles injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss liability and your legal options.
When a trampoline injury occurs on the property of another homeowner, such as a neighbor, for example, the homeowner may be held liable for that injury per the doctrine of attractive nuisance. This doctrine holds that a property owner has a duty to ensure that dangers, such as a trampoline, that are attractive to children are remedied, or that proper measures are taken to keep children off of the property. A homeowner could also be held liable for allowing a child use of a trampoline if the homeowner fails to properly supervise the child, or fails to ensure that the trampoline is well-maintained, and this failure results in injury.
When a trampoline injury (or another injury type, such as a slip and fall) occurs at a trampoline park, the trampoline park may be held liable if the park’s negligence was the cause of the accident. Failure to enforce trampoline park rules, negligent maintenance or repair, improper installation of trampolines, failure to remedy dangerous conditions, and more are all examples of negligence. If negligence led to injuries, the trampoline park may be held liable. In addition to the trampoline park, the manufacturer or installer of the trampolines may also face liability.
How Our Los Angeles Injury Lawyers Can Help
A trampoline park injury can be severe and life-changing. If you or your child has suffered a serious injury at a trampoline park, understanding your legal options is important. At the law offices of El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers, our Los Angeles injury lawyers can help you bring forth a claim for damages and navigate the personal injury claim process. Please reach us today for your free consultation and answers to your many legal questions.