Amusement Park Accidents
REPRESENTING VICTIMS INJURED AT UNSAFE AMUSEMENT PARKS
Amusement parks can be a great way to spend time with your young children. However, the park staff must ensure that they are following age, height, and other requirements to protect your child from harm and the park must maintain their rides to keep kids safe. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and serious injuries can occur as a result.
AMUSEMENT PARK ACCIDENT STATISTICS
The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) says over 335 million people visit one of the more than 400 amusement parks in the United States every year. An average of 7,000 of these people are treated in emergency rooms for injuries they sustained in amusement park ride accidents.
- In 2002, mobile amusement rides accounted for an estimated 3,000 non-occupational injuries treated in hospital emergency rooms.
- In 2000, there were an estimated 10,580 emergency room-treated injuries associated with both fixed-site and mobile amusement rides. From 1993 through 2000, there was a statistically significant increase in the total number of amusement ride injuries.
- Most injuries occurred to children 10-14 years old (17.9%), with children 5-9 (12.6%) and 15-19 years old (13.8%) next, but with many victims 0-4 years old (6.3%).
- Females (60.8%) were injured about 1.5 times more often than males (39.2%), and this difference held across ride sites, age groups, injured body parts, and diagnoses.
CAUSES OF AMUSEMENT PARK ACCIDENTS
According to U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reports, the most common causes of amusement park accidents include mechanical failures, operator behavior, and consumer behavior.
If your child has been injured at an amusement park, three types of law may apply – negligence, premises liability, and product liability law. A number of factors may be involved and a variety of responsible parties could be liable for your child’s injury. Thus, it is important that you seek immediate help from an experienced child injury attorney.
WHAT ARE COMMON AMUSEMENT PARK INJURIES?
Injuries suffered at amusement parks can range from minor to life-altering. Depending on the cause and nature of the accident, your or a loved one may suffer from:
- Traumatic head or brain injury
- Neck and spinal cord damage (whiplash)
- Broken bones and fractures
- Lacerations and soft tissue injuries
- Wrongful death
WHAT IS THE ROLLER COASTER LOOPHOLE?
The “Roller Coaster Loophole” refers to wording that was added to the Consumer Product Safety Act in 1981 that prevents federal safety experts from investigating fixed-site roller coaster accidents. This means that any amusement ride that is permanently attached to the ground is subject to state regulation. Mobile amusement rides however are subject to federal regulation. Often times you will find that fixed-site amusement ride regulations are often overlooked due to oversight from state officials.
CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED AMUSEMENT PARK ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
Amusement parks are intended to give families a fun, entertaining venue to have fun and relax. The last thing people should worry about when at an amusement park is their safety and the safety of their children. Regulation and oversight of fixed-site amusement parks can be lacking, which could lead to unsafe rides and experiences. If you or a loved one were injured while at an amusement park, contact Thomas J. Henry for a free case review. Our experienced amusement park injury lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to take your call.