Bounce houses are a great way to entertain kids at parties. They’re inflatable amusement parks, popping up at picnics and fairs and offering hours of fun, right? What could be the harm? There’s no sharp objects, no motors or movable parts to deal with. When you think about it, a bounce house is like one big bed of fluffy pillows — and who doesn’t have fun during a pillow fight?
Well, the thing is, bounce houses are not big beds and even pillow fights can lead to injury. The reality is that the number of serious injuries incurred in bounce houses is on the rise.
Dr. Gary Smith, of Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio, had a hunch that inflatable bounce houses were offering more than hours of fun. He launched the first study to find out how many bouncer-related injuries occurred in the United States, gathering data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), which collects patient information for every emergency visit involving an injury associated with consumer products.
What the data revealed was this: The number of inflatable bouncer-related injuries rose 1,500 percent between 1995 and 2010. From 2008 to 2010, the rate of injuries more than doubled. In 2010 alone, 31 children were treated in emergency departments each day on average, according to the report. Arm and leg injuries were the most common. The youngest children, those under 5, were more likely to have fractures, while teenagers were more likely to sustain sprains and strains.
Not surprisingly, the types of injuries sustained from bounce houses are similar to those that occur from trampoline use, but while there are national guidelines in place for trampolines there are none for bounce houses. While some vendors display their safety rules on their websites or at their facilities, it doesn’t necessarily mean these are being followed.
So it’s a probability that you may find the need to contact a Ft. Lauderdale personal injury attorney and pursue a personal injury claim settlement should an accident occur in one of these inflatable devices. If you find that your child has been invited to a party at which a bounce house is the central attraction, be wise and consider Smith’s following tips:
- Based on developmental abilities, don’t let children under the age of 6 to play in these inflatable devices
- Only have children of similar age and size play inside these bouncers at one time
- Horseplay, flips and somersaults should be prohibited
- Always have an adult present — but not inside with the children — when these devices are in use
The best Ft. Lauderdale personal injury protection is to try to be as safe as possible; but this can’t always be achieved. Your child doesn’t understand the prospects of injury — all they want to do is have fun, just like the other kids. Let them bounce if they want — just make sure you protect them as best you can by knowing the risks.