Theme parks are some of the best parts of summer. However, injuries can happen everywhere – even in the happiest places on earth. Read Greathouse Trial Law’s blog to learn more about what to do if you’ve been injured at a theme park.
Types of Theme Parks
Before we discuss the dangers of theme parks, we need to establish the types of parks you could encounter. Atlanta is home to a few fixed-site rides, like Six Flags Over Georgia, Stone Mountain Park, and Skyview.
Theme parks also include mobile rides that you may find at carnivals and fairs. These theme parks travel the country, so their rides must be easy to put up and take down. You may see mobile rides at the Atlanta Fair or the North Georgia State Fair.
In addition to the different types of theme parks, there are also various rides to consider. Carousels, bumper cars, roller coasters, and drop towers are a few common examples, and each comes with its types of dangers.
Dangers of Theme Parks
When planning a trip to a theme park, you’re likely not thinking about the potential dangers you could face. However, it’s essential to be aware of any injuries you could face and stay mindful of potential hazards.
The most common injuries you could face at a theme park include bumps and bruises, sprains, cuts, and fractures. However, catastrophic injuries like amputations, spinal cord damage, and traumatic brain injuries can still occur.
Between 1990 and 2010, over 90,000 children had to be treated in emergency rooms for amusement ride-related injuries. Most of these injuries occur from children falling in, off, on, or against a ride.
How to Prevent Injuries at Theme Parks
Now that we’ve discussed the types of theme parks you could encounter and the potential dangers of theme park rides, let’s look at seven safety precautions you can take to prevent injuries at theme parks.
Read All Signs
It’s essential to read all the signs you see in theme parks, whether the signs are maps or details for what rides entail. You should become familiar with ride instructions, the types of rides, and maps, and share that information with your children.
Choose Rides Carefully
Many theme parks have graduated rides, which means that the rides are created for different ages and developmental levels. Before getting on the ride, you should first watch it with your child. If your child seems apprehensive about riding, choosing another ride is a good idea.
Review the Rules
Before each ride at a theme park, you and your children should review the rules. Be sure to remind your child that they should not stand up while riding, put their hands or legs outside of the ride, or get off before it completely stops.
Most rides will have signs that display any height, weight, age, or health requirements. These requirements exist for a reason – to keep all passengers safe. If your child does not meet the criteria, it is always best to find another ride.
Use Safety Equipment
In addition to ride requirements, many theme parks also use safety equipment on their rides. Seatbelts and harnesses will ensure that your child is safe while having fun. However, if you notice that the safety equipment is not functioning correctly, you should always say something to the operator.
Know Your Child
Every child is different, so ensuring their safety comes down to knowing your child. For example, if you have a particularly rambunctious kid, you may need to accompany them on rides. Remember that even though theme parks have a responsibility to ensure your safety, you are still primarily responsible for your child’s wellbeing.
Trust Your Instincts
Many times, our gut instincts end up protecting us from potential dangers. If a ride doesn’t look safe or a ride operator doesn’t seem attentive, you should choose a different activity. Also, if you see something wrong, say something – while parks work to minimize danger, human error will always be a danger.
Theme Park Laws
Luckily, there are two laws to ensure safety at theme parks: the Georgia Amusement Ride Safety Act and Carnival Ride Safety Act. The Fire Commissioner of the Georgia Office of Safety holds amusement parks and carnivals accountable to these laws.
Speak to an Expert
Even with all the safety precautions and laws in the world, accidents can still happen. If you or a loved one is injured at a theme park, you may be able to file a civil suit under Georgia’s premises liability laws. However, it’s crucial to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney to get the justice you deserve.
Contact us today at (678) 310-2827 or complete our online form for your free case evaluation. Our personal injury law firm aims to serve the great people of Atlanta and to give a voice to the voiceless.
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