People of all ages, especially children, enjoy bouncing on trampolines. Individuals purchase trampolines as a form of outdoor entertainment for their families and friends. However, what may seem like harmless fun has actually caused severe injuries and even death for many people. According to the latest report from the Consumer Product Safety Commission, trampolines caused more than 100,000 severe injuries requiring emergency medical assistance.
We handled a trampoline accident in Palm Beach County where a young girl was allowed to play on a trampoline at her friend’s house, unsupervised. As not unexpected, she was injured because of the lack of supervision, and we pursued a claim against the parents of the child who own the home that are young client was visiting. We were successful in settling the case against the family's home owner insurance policy for more than $100,000.00
Trampoline accidents happen because individuals attempt to perform somersaults or other stunts, or when more than one person is jumping on the trampoline at the same time causing them to collide with one another, and because people fall off of the trampoline. In other circumstances, individuals fall or hurt themselves on the trampoline because there is a defect on the design or manufacturing of the trampoline. When a person is injured due to a defect or problem with the trampoline, he or she may be entitled to file a claim.
Unfortunately, a lot of the times, trampolines are recalled due to violations or hazards caused by the design. In January of 2013, a trampoline called Bounce Pro by Sports Power was recalled because the enclosure or the safety netting that surrounds the trampoline was not strong enough, causing it to rip or break.
In other situations, trampolines have been recalled because there are laceration, impalement, or cut and puncture hazards due to the design of the trampoline. For example, there have been trampolines designed with metal legs that move out of place, which are hazardous for the individuals using the trampoline. In the event that the metal leg moves out of position into the jumping area while the trampoline is in use, the person can have deep penetrating puncture wounds.
The injuries that occur as a result of trampoline accidents are often severe. The National Institutes of Health reports that the majority of trampoline accidents result in the following injuries:
- Head injuries
- Injuries to ligaments in the ankle, neck, and elbow
In an effort to decrease the number of individuals injured from trampolines and to prevent serious injuries, the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons lists several trampoline safety measures that parents and people who own trampolines can take. The safety tips are listed below:
- Trampolines should not be used for unsupervised recreational activity
- Competent adult supervision and instruction is needed for children at all times
- Only one participant should use a trampoline at any time
- Spotters should be present when participants are jumping. Somersaults or high-risk maneuvers should be avoided without proper supervision and instruction
- The trampoline-jumping surface should be placed at ground level
- The supporting bars, strings and surrounding landing surfaces should have adequate protective padding
- Equipment should be checked regularly for safety conditions
- Safety net enclosures may give a false sense of security – most injuries occur on the trampoline surface
- Trampolines are not recommended for children under 6 years of age
- Make sure trampoline ladders are removed after use to prevent unsupervised access by young children
If you own a trampoline, it is strongly recommended to check the recall page on the Consumer Product Safety Commission website. This is a government site that helps consumers become aware of what products have been recalled to protect your family and friends from injury. If you discover that your trampoline is listed as a recall item, stop using it immediately.
When your child, family member, or friend is injured as a result of a defect on the design or a problem with the manufacturing of a trampoline, it is imperative to find an attorney who understands product liability cases.
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