Injuries that occur at a theme park, resort or carnival may fall under premises liability. This would allow a victim to file a claim against the property owner. However, victims would need to prove that any physical harm was a result of negligence by the park/resort or an employee of the facility.
Injuries That May Occur at a Theme Park or Resort
Possible types of injuries are many, ranging from minor lacerations and fractures to serious brain damage and death in the most severe cases. Much of this depends on the circumstances surrounding the incident or accident. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission reported in 2009 that an estimated 31,069 emergency room visits were attributed to inflatable amusements alone. This only covers the rides like bounce houses and moon walks.
Some examples of circumstances that can lead to injuries include:
- falls – ski lifts, rollercoasters or other rides;
- drowning – water slide, pool, spa;
- serious food poisoning – restaurants, concession stands; and
- bites/attacks – animals.
Not every injury sustained at a theme park or resort will warrant legal action. In fact, these can be complicated claims.
Elements Necessary to Prove in a Premises Liability Claim
The most important element is proving negligence. At the same time, one must consider the assumption of risk that may be involved in a potentially dangerous activity.
An example would be someone who is injured or killed at a ski resort. Owners must take reasonable measures to protect skiers. But if someone is injured in an avalanche, this would likely be one of those risks that skiers assume. However, in some cases a victim might argue that a portion of the ski slope had a known risk of an avalanche and the owner failed to prevent access to it.
Even with an assumption of risk, there can be a variety of challenges that arise. So it’s critical to establish that the owner or an employee was negligent. The nature of this depends on the circumstances. For instance, if someone falls off a ride at a carnival, it could be a result of the ride operator improperly securing the individual. If someone drowns in a pool at a waterpark, there may not have been enough qualified lifeguards on duty.
Another element is connecting the negligence to the injuries. Lack of qualified lifeguards may be negligent, and an individual may drown because the lifeguards are inattentive or otherwise fail to notice the swimmer in distress.
The final element is proving damages. These can be financial, physical and/or emotional. Medical bills connected to the accident are an example as well as missed time from work. Physically someone might suffer because of a traumatic amputation or an injury that results in permanent disability. Victims may seek pain and suffering damages as well.
Oftentimes there are emotional injuries suffered as well. Falling from a ride is traumatic. Victims might claim damages like mental anguish or emotional distress associated with the traumatic event.
Talk to attorney D.J. Banovitz about your claim to discuss whether you may be entitled to damages after your accident. Set up your consultation by calling 303-300-5060 or fill out our online contact form.