Last week, a Tennessee family filed a $750,000 lawsuit against Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park in Cordova in Shelby County Circuit Court. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the couple’s son, who was injured on a rope course at the venue in September 2017.
According to the complaint filed, the child was given a harness by an employee and was subsequently told that he was “good to go.” The child then began climbing up the pole to the top and he then fell off, landing on the ground, which is estimated to be about a twelve to fifteen foot drop. The boy suffered serious injuries to his legs and is now permanently disabled. The lawsuit alleged that employees had failed to secure the lanyard rope, which is designed to prevent children from falling. It also claims that Urban Air failed to adequately train employees on safety precautions.
Fox 25 Boston reported that a spokesman for Urban Air provided a statement in a voicemail, stating that “Urban Air is committed to ensuring the highest levels of safety to our guests and employees…[Urban] focus[es] on meeting and exceeding industry standards in training and operating procedures.”
Urban Air has not discussed the specifics of the lawsuit, but did note that the family signed a waiver. Such waiver warns parents of potential risks that can result in injury, including those of both a minor and major nature. By signing the waiver, parents also acknowledge that the venue will not cover any medical expenses.
The family is suing Urban Air for $750,000 in damages, which would cover all “past, present, and future” medical expenses associated with the boy’s treatment. It would also cover parents’ lost wages.
Fox 25 also reports that a recent study published in the Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics found that on a national level, injuries at trampoline parks are an “emerging concern.” The study reached such a conclusion due to a significant increase in patients visiting emergency rooms due to injuries attained at trampoline parks. The number of incidents appears to be growing congruently with the number of indoor trampoline parks growing in the United States.
Such a trend as reported in the study can be confirmed by the number of lawsuits filed over the past few years. In an article published by CNN in 2016, it was reported that eighteen families in the Seattle area had filed negligence claims against the same trampoline park. The families argued that the trampoline centers are “inherently dangerous” in their design and supervision. Ten of these lawsuits were settled with the park’s insurance company.
Furthermore, a Texas teen was awarded $11.5 million in a lawsuit filed after he suffered a traumatic brain injury at a trampoline park in 2013. Jurors had found Cosmic Jump, an indoor trampoline park in Harris County, grossly negligent in what became the largest jury verdict ever against a commercial trampoline park in the United States.