The St. Louis personal injury lawyers at Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers have noticed an increase in serious trampoline injuries in Missouri and the U.S. This increase in injuries has not gone unnoticed by doctors and child safety advocates. Many pediatricians are of the opinion that trampolines, are a “significant public health problem,” and should no longer be allowed in backyards.
Trampoline Fractures in Children
Indiana University researchers looked into the data behind trampoline-related injuries between 2002 and 2011 in the hopes of recognizing injury patterns. The study was led by Dr. Randall T. Loder, M.D., and medical student William Schultz.
Their research, which was published in the online Journal of Pediatric Orthopedics, was the first to analyze trampoline fracture accidents. It found that trampolines sent more than one million people to the emergency room in the decade sampled. An estimated 288,876 of those injuries involve fractures.
Dr. Loder’s study was focused on bone fractures and analyzed this data further. Finding that most of the bone fractures involved upper-extremities; fingers, hands, elbows, and forearms. Forearm fractures are the most common type of fracture in healthy children, and are typically seen in early adolescence.
Surprisingly, teenagers are more likely to suffer axial skeleton injuries in trampoline accidents than children. The average age for axial skeleton injuries is 16.6 years old.
Although both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons advise against home trampoline use, ninety-five percent of all trampoline fractures occurred at the patient’s home. The Illinois University research team has endorsed better trampoline safety education, however Dr. Loder thinks education is not enough to reduce injuries. In an interview, Dr. Loder said he personally believes home trampolines should be banned.
Who is Liable in a Trampoline Accident Case?
In a trampoline injury case, a St. Louis personal injury lawyer will have to look into four key elements related to the injury.
- Duty of Care: The first element is establishing the responsibilities of the trampoline owner. In a lot of trampoline injury cases, the injured person will be a guest of the premises. It is the owner’s duty or responsibility to ensure that the trampoline is well maintained, that the parents of any child have consented to their child using the trampoline, that there is only one child on the trampoline at a time, etc. Duty of care can differ based on state, type of ownership (residential or commercial), and other factors.
- Breach of Duty: Did the premises owner or the owner of the trampoline fail to perform any of the above responsibilities?
- Causation: Causation links breach of duty to the injuries or damages. Were the injuries a direct result of the owner’s breach of duty? In other words, was the incident a direct result of the owner’s actions (or lack of actions)
- Damages: In a trampoline injury case, there have to be definitive damages related to the incident. These could be related to medical bills, pain and suffering, additional mental suffering, loss of wages due to the inability to attend work, and any other injury-related expenses. A St. Louis personal injury lawyer can help the injured victim in claiming damages.
If you or your child has been injured in a trampoline accident, it wouldn’t hurt to contact Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers to speak with a trampoline injury lawyer.