Who is at Fault if Your Child is Hurt on the Playground?
Playground injuries are very common. In fact, the CDC reports that more than 200,000 children visit the ER every year for accidents on the playground. In many cases, the cause of these injuries is benign. Children are not as coordinated as adults and often take additional risks due to inexperience. In other cases, however, the injury may be the result of negligence. For example, who is at fault if your child is hurt on the playground due to faulty equipment or lack of maintenance? Do you have the right to pursue legal action? Read our article to find out more.
What Types of Playground Injuries are Most Common?
Playground injuries can range from mild to severe. Plenty of children earn scrapes and bruises naturally while playing. But of the children who visited the ER, the following injuries were most often reported by medical staff:
- Severe fractures
- Concussions/traumatic brain injuries
- Internal injuries
These alarming injuries occurred in 45% of children who visited the ER.
What Playground Equipment is Most Dangerous?
The worst injuries on the playground are caused by falls. Unsurprisingly, the most dangerous playground areas are the “climbing” structures. These include:
- Monkey bars
- Glider swings
- Trapeze bars
- Jungle gyms
- Exercise rings
- Swinging ropes
Of course, any playground equipment has the potential to cause serious injury. Broken swing seats may lead to serious falls, for example, and overheated slides have been known to result in severe burns.
Who Is Liable in a Playground Accident?
Playground equipment must meet strict guidelines and owners of these structures are expected to adopt a routine maintenance program to reduce the risk of injury. Owners of playground equipment can range from private individuals to municipal or state entities.
Likewise, the manufacturers of playground equipment must follow standard safety specifications when making and distributing their product. If a piece of equipment was defective from the start, or the manufacturer failed to supply sufficient installation instructions, they may be liable for your child’s injuries.
If it is found that your child was injured due to the negligence of the property owner and/or the manufacturer, you have the right to pursue legal action. A personal injury attorney will help you identify the person or persons liable in your particular case.
What To Do If Your Child is Injured on the Playground?
If your child was hurt on the playground, your first priority should be their safety. Take them to receive appropriate medical care as soon as possible.
Once your child is being treated and safe, you will want to compile evidence of their injuries and the suspected cause. Take photographs of the injury/injuries and keep all medical documentation. When you are able, return to the playground to take photographs of the conditions that caused the injury, such as a piece of broken equipment or an area that has not been refilled with sand or mulch.
Finally, you will want to contact an experienced personal injury attorney. Your lawyer will help you determine the responsible parties and build a case on your behalf while you focus on your child and his or her recovery.
Negligent Supervision in Playground Accidents
Active supervision is critical in preventing child injury when on playgrounds. Children are inherent risk-takers, meaning they will often make poor decisions when it comes to their own safety. When you leave your child in the care of another, you are assuming this caretaker will provide adequate supervision and guidance.
Unfortunately, there are cases where blatantly negligent supervision results in severe injury to a child. These cases can be more difficult to prove, so you will want to speak to an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. He or she will conduct interviews and collect evidence to determine the exact circumstances under which the injury occurred. For example, a personal injury lawyer will help you decide if you have the right to sue the school district for negligent supervision on the part of a teacher or other guardian.
Playground Injury Lawyer Colorado
The playground should be a place of fun and adventure for young children. Unfortunately, it can also be the start of a nightmare if your child is hurt. We allow our children to play on public equipment in good faith, trusting that it is safe and well maintained.
If your child was injured on the playground due to the negligence of another, please contact the Roth Group to discuss your case further. Injuries to a child can be particularly emotional, and those responsible should be held accountable. Call or go online today to schedule your free consultation.