Over the last five years, trampoline park injuries have increased 211%. In 2014, there were 6,200 reported emergency room visits from trampoline park injuries. In 2018, there were 19,300 reported emergency room visits from trampoline park injuries. That’s nearly triple the amount in four years.
Something needs to change.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has published a study that encompasses the reported emergency room visits over the last 5 years. In addition to the CPSC, the American Academy of Pediatrics has repeatedly reported that injuries are rising at an alarming rate.
In the study, 59% of children who visit an emergency room after an injury from a trampoline park are presenting with leg fractures. Of this 59%, 33% of those injuries are happening upon landing. 8% happen to involve another bouncer. This could be something like double bouncing, collision mid-air, or another injury type. The amount of force in a double bounce was reported to be similar to a 90mph car crash. We previously examined that data and analysis in another blog post, which you can find here.
Dr. Rene Ramirez, who works in an emergency room in Fresno, reports that due to the “underdeveloped skeletal systems” of minors, and the high impact of trampolines, severe injuries are inevitable.
Not only is Dr. Ramirez speaking out, so is a Duke University pediatric surgeon, Dr. Henry Rice. Dr. Rice wants parents to “pay attention to what’s in those waivers and take them seriously.” He further stated that “It is not a trivial risk that parents need to understand before they let their child jump on the trampoline . . . sometimes you’ll have broken bones, or a neck strain.”
This begs the question . . . how many children have to get injured before Congress and the Legislature start to take notice and enact laws to protect minors from these parks. As of now, only a few states have some sort of safety regulation in place. As of November 2019- there is no federal regulation for trampoline parks.
It doesn’t sit well with us that an industry responsible for thousands of children’s injuries per year somehow manages to escape federal regulation and attempt to avoid liability by a waiver.
While a large majority of these trampoline parks will make you, as a parent, sign a waiver on behalf of your child, those waivers are not always valid. In fact, numerous states have held that a parent cannot sign a waiver for their child. Even a few states have laws that state the waivers that adults sign are invalid.