Who is Responsible for Amusement Park Injuries
Most people look forward to a day at an amusement park. You’ve planned out your day from food to rides. However, you never plan on the potential dangers for these parks. A visit to an amusement park can result serious injuries or even death. In fact, injuries at amusement parks are common. Believe it or not, the Consumer Product Safety Act of 1981 prohibits the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) from regulating the safety of rides which are fixed to a specific site. Visitors must rely on the owners and operators of these amusement parks to make sure the rides are safe. There are thousands of amusement park accidents per year around the United States – 51% of these accidents affect children.
What type of injuries occur in Theme Parks?
Injuries can range for sprains and strains to death. The most common types of amusement park injuries include neck injuries, back injuries, head injuries, traumatic brain injuries, heart attacks, broken bones, and miscarriages. More severe and gruesome accidents at amusement parks can result in severed limbs, electrocutions, impalements, and even decapitations.
What are the common causes of Amusement Park Accidents?
Inappropriate Ride Operator Behavior – This is most common in traveling amusement parks like county fairs or festivals. There is little screening of the operators, insufficient training, and they are generally poorly paid. Examples of inappropriate ride operator behavior include ride operators acting under the influence of alcohol or drugs, falling asleep while the ride is in progress, getting distracted by other park visitors, and overlooking developing problems.
Mechanical Failure – Mechanical failure of theme park rides can occur at even the best-maintained parks. Typically, rides begin to break down as a result of aging and poorly maintained parts. Ride mechanisms are in constant motion for hours upon hours each and every day. Mechanical failures will occur with even the best of maintenance. Other mechanical failures can include ride component failure, loose parts, corroded, or rusty rides, sharp or protruding objects, emergency brake failure, un-inspected and/or un-repaired ride damage, and water near rides.
Construction Flaws Or Design Defects – Amusement parks and theme parks are consistently introducing the latest and greatest rides to keep a competitive edge over other parks. Sometimes the rides are introduced prior to the most comprehensive and sufficient testing for safety and design. Other defects can include Improper safety locks or restraints, insufficient height or weight restrictions, abrupt starts and stops, unsafe loading and/or unloading procedures, faulty assembly, insufficient height or weight restrictions, poor lighting, failure to post proper warnings, slick surfaces, and exposed electrical wires or other sources of power.
On-Premises Assaults And Robberies – Amusement and theme park assaults and robberies happen. Many people carry a lot of cash to pay for ride tickets, foods, souvenirs, etc, making them a more desirable target for criminals. Lack of security and surveillance cameras allows these people to greater access to unsuspecting victims. Limited or poorly trained security personnel often fail to stop criminals from committing crimes in the parks, as well.
Who is responsible for injuries?
Amusement park owners must do everything reasonably possible to protect their visitors from harm. The law indicates amusement park owners have breached their duty if they fail to do protect their visitors from undue harm and are negligent. There is a right to legal compensation when that breach of duty causes a park visitor’s injury. Damages can include medical and therapy bills, out-of-pocket expenses for medications, gasoline, hospital parking fees, lost wages, pain and suffering, etc.
What do you do if you are injured?
- Report your injury to management.
- Don’t leave the park – ask the ride operator or closest amusement park employee for help.
- Go to the hospital if needed – some injuries do not present themselves immediately. Get thoroughly evaluated by a medical professional.
- Talk to witnesses – eyewitnesses who are not family or friends are best. They can help shed some light on the exact cause of your accident.
- Get photographs, video, or audio recordings – For example, did you trip and fall on a step? Take a photograph of that step.
- Collect copies of any written reports, receipts, medical bills, medical charts, and out-of-pocket expenses. If you misses work, have your company verify your lost wages.
Call an Experienced Attorney for Help
Call an attorney to help you file your claim. The sooner you reach out to an attorney, the sooner someone can protect your interests. The claim process can be confusing and difficult. Should you give a recorded statement? Maybe not. Let an experienced personal injury attorney help you through your case.
Brandy Austin Law Firm offers a free case evaluation. We can do so both on the phone and in person. There is no obligation to sign up as a client. The legal staff simply want to make sure you recover what is necessary for you to move on with your life.