Amusement Park Accidents

Amusement park silhouetted against a sunset

With summer fast approaching, many amusement parks are getting ready to re-open for the season. Most of the time, these theme parks are a wholesome way to spend a day with family and friends. But rollercoasters and other thrilling rides are not without risks. Approximately 30,000 individuals were treated in emergency rooms in 2016 for injuries related to amusement park accidents. You may be wondering what your options are if you or someone you know was hurt at a theme park. Can you file a lawsuit for amusement park accidents? Read our article to find out more. 

What Types of Accidents Happen at Amusement Parks?

Sadly, most amusement park accidents involve children between the ages of 5 and 14, and many injuries are related to rides. These include:

  • Whiplash
  • Concussions/Brain injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Cuts and bruises
  • Avulsions

But amusement park accidents are not limited to rides. For example, slip and fall accidents may occur on unsafe surfaces, or a guest may experience food poisoning from contaminated park concessions. 

In rare cases, amusement park accidents can result in death. Falls from high rides, drowning on water rides, or catastrophic injuries can result in tragic and wrongful death. 

What Causes Amusement Park Accidents?

There are three general scenarios that can lead to accidents at an amusement park:

Guest Negligence

Guest negligence can result in an accident at a theme park. For example, a rider may deliberately unfasten a seatbelt or refuse to follow instructions given by the operator. Likewise, a guest may violate park safety rules by climbing on unsafe equipment or trying to access prohibited areas. Alcohol intoxication or drug use leading to an accident also falls under guest negligence.

Guest Health Issues

Guests are advised against participating in certain rides if they have specific health issues. These health issues may or may not be known to the guest. For example, guests with heart problems, high blood pressure, or who are pregnant should consult with a physician before riding a rollercoaster or other attraction that may exacerbate their condition. 

Park Negligence

Some amusement park accidents occur due to the negligence of the park itself. This includes operator error. For example, an operator may not have been adequately trained, leading him or her to improperly fasten a safety harness. Or, an operator may have knowingly let a younger guest onto the ride despite not being tall enough. 

Mechanical failures due to lack of maintenance are also the park’s responsibility. The owner of the amusement park has a duty to guests to routinely inspect and maintain all equipment for optimal safety and performance. 

The park owner is also responsible for addressing dangerous environmental conditions in a timely manner. Spills, pavement cracks, debris, or any other potential slip and fall hazards should be removed as soon as possible.

Can I Sue for an Amusement Park Accident?

Yes. If your injuries were caused by the negligence of the park, then you have the right to pursue legal action. Even if you think you may be partially at fault, it is wise to consult with a personal injury attorney to determine if you should sue the park for damages. Colorado’s comparative negligence laws may allow you to seek compensation, so long as you are less than 50 percent responsible for your injuries. 

For example, you may have had a beer or two and tripped over an uneven sidewalk, resulting in a fall that dislocated your shoulder. Although your judgment may have been partially impaired, the park is still responsible for addressing hazardous conditions. An experienced attorney can help you seek damages for medical bills, loss of income, and more. 

Amusement Park Accident Attorney Colorado

If you or someone you know was injured at an amusement park, contact Dave Roth with the Roth Group. Dave is a highly skilled and dedicated personal injury attorney who works to achieve the best possible outcomes for his clients. Call or go online today to schedule your free consultation