Trampoline season is well underway in Connecticut. Kids are already bouncing about in backyards across every neighborhood. Since the pandemic, trampoline sales have been skyrocketing, and they don’t seem to be slowing any time soon.
But while home trampolines have certainly become more popular, that doesn’t make them any safer. Mayo Clinic reports that more than 1 million Americans are seen in emergency rooms for trampoline-related injuries every year. Most of these incidents involve children under the age of 16, and all of these accidents are 100% preventable.
How Do Trampoline Accidents Occur
Hospitals across the state are experiencing an increase in seasonal influenza and an uptick in COVID-19 cases. The emergency room is the last place anyone wants to be right now, especially when the weather is warm and beautiful. But when trampoline season is upon us, more families end up spending their day in the hospital treating injuries than playing outdoors.
Trampoline injuries most often occur when too many people are on the apparatus, when the trampoline is in poor condition, or when jumpers neglect to use safe behaviors. Trampoline accidents can happen for several reasons, but most injuries involve the following:
- Hand and foot injuries from getting stuck in springs
- Impact injuries from landing on the trampoline frames, springs, or hard mats
- Fall injuries from bouncing off the apparatus onto the ground or colliding with stationary objects
- Landing injuries from double bouncing or attempting risky moves
- Collision injuries with other bouncers on the trampoline
- Slip and fall injuries from wet trampoline surfaces
Trampolines have always had a reputation for being dangerous, and for a good reason. People jumping on trampolines use excessive force to propel themselves upward, forward, backward, barreling into flips or twists. When things (or people) get in the way, or the force of a jump is redirected, the body can sustain severe trauma, especially when falling from elevated surfaces.
Common Trampoline Injuries
Trampoline injuries can range from minor bumps and bruises to severe health conditions depending on the events transpiring before the accident. Some severe trampoline-related injuries result in intensive care, long-term treatments, and can even result in the form of disability.
Some of the most common injuries diagnosed in emergency rooms include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Head, chest, and sternum injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Spinal fractures
- Bone fractures
Among all trampoline injuries reported each year, Mayo Clinic reports that one-third of trampoline accidents involve an injury to the upper or lower extremities, typically a fracture or sprain. The most common fractures involve the two largest bones in the forearm– the ulna and the radius. These injuries occur most often when children bounce out of control and shoot their arms in front or behind them to brace for the fall.
The Net Misconception
Every year, trampoline participants mistakenly rely too heavily on trampoline safety nets to protect them while bouncing. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee of a safe landing on a trampoline, even with safety nets installed.
Trampoline nets have been known to fail, tangle bouncers, or even collapse on children while in use. Aside from these mishaps, some jumpers will purposely bounce against the net, over the net, or use it as a “sling shot”, further wearing the device and increasing its likelihood to fail over time.
How To Jump Safe This Spring
Keeping children off of trampolines this season will prevent 100% of accidents. However, if you still want to bounce, safety is key to staying out of the emergency room this spring.
First and foremast, make sure to read all trampoline instructions carefully and follow the safety precautions provided by the manufacturer. While it seems like a harmless bouncing activity, if used incorrectly, trampolines will lead to serious injuries to your children or other children participating, which could subject you to a future lawsuit. Supervision and following the safety guidelines are key to a happy and safe summer.
Here are some other general trampoline safety rules you can implement to help prevent injuries:
- Inspect trampoline parts for malfunctions or defects before every jumping session. Ensure that springs are in working condition, prevent gapping in mats, and notice any tears in the safety net that need to be repaired.
- Supervise children on trampolines at all times from outside of the unit, not within a house or from too far away.
- Only allow one child to jump at a time. If the children are small and do not bounce hard, two children may be able to jump safely.
- Discourage children from jumping against the net or bouncing off the trampoline onto other structures.
- Do not allow double bouncing.
- Keep the trampoline surface dry to prevent slipping.
When in doubt, don’t jump. If there are too many kids to supervise or participants are not following the rules, redirect the group to another activity. There are plenty of other ways to stay busy and active outside that do not involve a trampoline. Some of these activities may include:
- Freeze tag
- Building a fort
- Obstacle courses
- Nature walks
- Sports (basketball, soccer, baseball)
- Chalk drawing
- Bike riding, scooters, and more
Jacobs & Wallace Trampoline Accident Attorneys
If you or someone you love is injured in an accident, you need an experienced law firm to represent you. Jacobs & Wallace, PLLC, has decades of experience fighting for the rights of Connecticut’s injured victims. Please contact us today for a FREE case evaluation: 203-332-7700.