A growing number of people are suffering serious injuries at trampolining parks across the country, which could lead to a major spike in public liability claims.
Nearly 500 children were hospitalised in three states between 2012 and 2017, according to new research from the University of Sydney. However, these cases are just the tip of the iceberg, with the study failing to include:
“There would be many with injuries that will go to their GP, some with a sprained ankle may not even bother going to the doctor,” said Dr Lisa Sharwood, lead investigator of the research.
There were no trampoline parks in Australia until 2012, but over 80 now exist.
The seriousness of some injuries has sparked calls for the introduction of a mandatory safety standard. While the Australian Trampoline Park Association has a Code of Practice, only one-fifth of the country’s operators are members.
More than 20 per cent of hospitalisations from trampoline park accidents are spinal chord and head injuries, the University of Sydney found. The most serious admissions were typically due to children performing somersaults.
“Some of these incidents have caused permanent and lifelong disability and are now resulting in legal actions,” said Dr Sharwood.
“Sadly, any changes we can make to prevent future injuries will be too late for many children and teenagers whose lives will never be the same.”
Trampoline park injuries don’t just affect children. Jackson Sievers, a 22-year-old Australian National University student, was left a quadriplegic in January after landing awkwardly at Sky Zone in Canberra.
The impact following a botched somersault broke his neck between the C4 and C5 vertebrae, nine.com.au reported. Doctors have told him he will never walk again and he has minimal use of his hands.
“So many people have been injured in a similar way, especially lots of kids,” he stated.
People who are injured in trampoline park accidents may be able to claim compensation if they can show the operator was negligent. However, different liability laws exist from state to state, so please contact Gerard Malouf & Partners Compensation, Medical Negligence & Will Dispute Lawyers to find out how to pursue a claim.