Enjoy Amusement Parks Safely

Looking for something to do with the kids this weekend? A big benefit of living in South Florida is the availability of many theme and amusement parks - just a short drive away.

What you want is to have leisurely fun in the sun with your children. What you don't want is to bring home anything more than a little sunburn. Unfortunately, enjoying the rides comes with some risk of injury.

By design, most rides aim to thrill riders with speed and sudden stops. Many attractions accelerate suddenly or have lots of side-to-side motion. With these types of movements, riders' elbows, knees, heads and other body areas come into contact with seatbelts, straps and the interior of the rides.

The result is often mild to serious injuries including strains, bruises and even fractures. Riders commonly experience whiplash similar to that experienced in a car accident. Also, in older adults, the physical stress of a ride may bring on heart problems or seizures.

Causes of Amusement Park Accidents

Accidents that occur while enjoying amusement park rides may be due to negligence. Here are just some causes of ride accidents:

  • Malfunction of the ride
  • Operator negligence or error
  • Breakdown of safety restraints
  • Lacking safety warnings
  • Poor ride maintenance
  • Roughhousing on the ride
  • Weather conditions

There is no federal oversight of safety standards for amusement parks. Instead, each state is responsible for equipment standards and inspections. In Florida, the Bureau of Fair Rides Inspection requires annual permits of our 245 permanent parks and 190 traveling companies. Permanent rides are inspected semi-annually and temporary rides each time they are set up. In many areas, local ordinances dictate additional safety requirements.

Avoid Accidents by Following Common-Sense Safety Guidelines

Don't let your family fun day turn into a tragedy. The Law Offices of Diana Santa Maria, P.A. urges you to follow these safe-riding tips:

  • Always follow posted height and weight rules - if your instinct says the ride will be too much for your child, pass it up.
  • Make sure everyone stays seated on rides and keeps heads, arms and legs inside.
  • Use seat belts or lap bars properly.
  • Follow operator instructions - never stand up or get off the ride until instructed.
  • Don't wear long skirts and tie up long hair.
  • Avoid drinks with alcohol and caffeine; stay well-hydrated with water.
  • Choose a family meeting place and make sure your children can find it. Instruct them to look for a uniformed employee if they get lost.
You may Have a Claim if You Have Been Injured at an Amusement Park

If you or a family member has been injured while on the premises of an amusement park or in any other personal injury, please call the Law Offices of Diana Santa Maria, P.A. for a free consultation. Attorneys Diana Santa Maria and Laura D. Dolin, personal injury attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, will fight to get you the compensation that you and your family deserve. You can reach us at (954) 434-1077 or contact us via the website.