Bounce house injuries can be serious and sometimes fatal. If you or your child has been injured in a bounce house or other inflatable amusement, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the negligent party to recover compensation for your medical bills, expenses, and pain and suffering.
The attorneys at the law firm FlorinIRoebig have considerable experience handling complex personal injury cases, including those involving product and premises liability.
Bounce House Popularity
Inflatable attractions include bounce houses, slides, obstacle courses, bouncy games, and others. These devices have become increasingly popular over the years and are well loved by children and adults alike. If you are like most parents, you are familiar with the stress of hosting a kid’s birthday party or event.
For adults who are facing the daunting task of entertaining multiple high energy children, renting a bounce house may seem like a no brainer. After all, most rental companies claim their inflatable play structures are a safe way to have fun. However, it turns out that bounce houses may not be as safe as you may think.
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Bounce House Injuries On The Rise
Bounce houses, also known as moon bounces, are not only found at birthday parties. They are also a common attraction at fairs, festivals, carnivals, amusement parks, and other events.
Statistics show that bounce houses are the most dangerous inflatable attraction. According to the Child Injury Prevention Alliance, the number of injuries associated with inflatable bouncy houses has soared over the last 20 years to more than 30 children injured every day. Bouncer related injuries account for an upwards of 4,000 emergency room visits a year in the United States. Although the injuries sustained can vary greatly, the most commonly reported ones include:
- Broken bones, especially broken arms, hands, legs, and feet
- Head and neck injuries
- Tooth loss
Worst Bounce House Accidents
Over the years, we have seen a lot of news about bounce houses causing severe injuries and even fatalities. Some of the worst bounce house accidents are listed below:
- In May 2003, a 15-year old male in Illinois suffered a traumatic brain injury and subsequently died four days later, after he fell from an inflatable slide.
- In December 2007, a 3-year old boy in Washington died of head injuries after two adults fell on him in an indoor bounce house.
- In June 2010, a 54-year old man from Pennsylvania was attending a Cleveland Indians game when an inflatable slide fell on top of him. The man suffered multiple broken back bones and died nine days later as a result of his injuries.
- In June 2011, 13 people in New York were injured when a heavy gust of wind caused three inflatable structures to go airborne.
- In May 2014, 2 young boys in New York sustained severe injuries when wind lifted a moon bounce high into the air, causing them to fall nearly 20 feet.
- In October 2014, two toddlers in New Hampshire were injured, one critically, when they were trapped inside a moon bounce that was swept up 30 feet in the air by a gust of wind.
- In May 2016, 10 people in Texas were hurt when a strong wind blew a bounce house into a fence.
- In July 2019, a 9-year old girl in Nevada died after a bounce house was blown into the air and got caught in neighborhood power lines. Two other kids were injured in the accident as well.
As you can see, inflatable bounce houses can quickly turn a fun time into tragedy. Despite common misconception, bounce house accidents happen often, and the consequences can be disastrous. Although these facts may be alarming, it is important for parents to be aware of the risks of bouncing.
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How To Prevent Bounce House Injuries
While some bounce house injuries are unavoidable, many can be prevented. In recent years, the frequency of injuries associated with inflatable play structures have increased. Here are some safety tips you can implement to lower your child’s risk of injury when bouncing:
- Adult supervision is required at all times. Do not ever leave children unattended while they are inside the bounce house.
- Do not set up or allow the people who are installing the inflatable to situate it near trees, branches, power lines, pools, or fences.
- Monitor weather conditions closely. Discontinue use during periods of rain, lightning, or winds. Consider deflating the inflatable if high winds occur.
- Limit bounce house use to kids 6 years of age and older. Younger children should not be permitted to enter the inflatable.
- Follow all recommended safety guidelines, including the total limit of kids allowed in the bounce house at one time.
- Make sure the equipment is properly installed. The inflatable should be adequately anchored through the use of metal stakes or sandbags.
- Only allow children to enter the inflatable device after they remove their shoes, jewelry, eyeglasses, and empty their pockets.
- To avoid head and neck injuries, do not allow children to do flips or somersaults.
- Kids in bounce houses should be close in size and age. Adults should not bounce while children are present.
- No food, drink, or chewing gum should be permitted inside or around the inflatable device.
- Pets and toys should not be allowed in or on any type of inflatable attraction.
- If the bounce house starts to deflate, evacuate all occupants immediately. Then, check to see if the unit has been unplugged.
- Under no circumstances should you move the inflatable device from the place where it was originally installed.
Thousands of kids are injured each year in bounce houses and other inflatables. It is important to hire a reputable company to supply and install an inflatable amusement. Check to make sure they carry liability insurance and have no pending lawsuits against them. After the unit has been installed, do a thorough inspection to check for device defects and proper installation. When children are bouncing, it is your responsibility to stay alert. If you fail to do so and an injury occurs, you could be held liable for damages.
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What Are The Causes Of Bounce House Injuries?
As inflatable rides rise in popularity, exposure to the devices has increased. More exposure has led to a greater occurrence of bounce house accidents and subsequently, the rate of injury has skyrocketed. Common causes of bounce house injuries include, but are not limited to:
- Excessive number of children in the bounce house at one time
- Lack of adult supervision
- People of different ages and weights in the inflatable
- Equipment failure and faulty installation
- Severe weather, including high winds and rain
Who Can Be Held Liable For Inflatable Ride Injuries?
After you or someone you love sustains serious injuries due to someone else’s carelessness, you may be wondering if you can file a lawsuit to recover damages. The foundation for a successful personal injury claim is being able to prove liability and negligence. To win a case, you or your lawyer will have to demonstrate that the responsible party owed a duty of care, breached that duty of care, was a cause of injury and damages you or your child incurred.
The following parties may be held liable for inflatable structure related injuries:
- The bounce house operator or supervisor
- The equipment owners
- The installers of the inflatable attraction
- The renter (person, group, entity, or organization) that leased the inflatable device
- The bounce house manufacturer who designed a faulty product
- The property owner where the accident occurred
Determining who is at fault in a bounce house accident can be extremely complicated and often requires legal advice. Consult with the dedicated team of personal injury lawyers at FlorinIRoebig to help you make a determination on liability and pursue legal action against the responsible parties.
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Bounce House Accident Attorney
The first thing you should do after you or your kid is injured in an inflatable bounce house is seek medical treatment. Then, you should call a qualified, top-rated lawyer for a free consultation to find out if you are entitled to compensation. Your child’s injury is important to us and we want to help you hold the bounce house company, insurance company, or any other negligent party accountable for their actions.
We are focused on the attorney-client relationship and pride ourselves on providing quality representation that delivers real results. If you or someone you love has been injured in a bounce house accident, contact the award-winning personal injury attorneys at FlorinIRoebig today.