By Pendergast Law on September 23, 2016
A recent report from the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries indicated that area amusement parks reported two accidents involving rides and 19 unauthorized ride operators. The amusement park accident report brings into focus the potential dangers posed by amusement park rides to local residents.
Statistics indicate that most amusement park accidents occur between May and September during summer vacation. Safety experts claim operator negligence is one of the leading causes of accidents in the state. Nationwide, an average of nearly 5 Americans are killed each year on park rides.
With so many unauthorized rides and careless operators in the state, there is a very real threat of serious injuries or even fatalities. It’s important that parents and park visitors make safety a priority and be on the look out for rides that don’t have proper inspection papers or for park employees that might be acting negligently. Unfortunately, no amount of caution on the part of riders can prevent every accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a ride at an amusement park or water park, you may be entitled to significant compensation. There might be a number of parties that could be held liable. Most cases involving park accidents fall into one of three categories: negligence, product liability, or premises liability.
Negligence refers to an injury or fatality that results from the carelessness of a park employee or the park as a whole. Examples include failure to properly train employees, failure to regularly inspect and maintain rides, or providing riders with incorrect instructions. It’s important to note that if you observe any negligent behavior on the part of park employees that you should document and report it BEFORE an accident occurs.
Often, the cause of an accident at an amusement park is faulty equipment or defective parts, a poorly designed ride, or equipment that hasn’t been properly maintained. In such cases, the owners of the park, the ride designer, or the ride manufacturer might all be held liable.
Premises liability means that the owner of the property has a duty to keep it reasonably safe for all visitors, including the installation of proper handrails, adequate security, and cleaning up all debris. Failure to do so leaves them open to being found liable for any accidents.
If you or a loved one has been injured at an amusement park, the last thing you want to worry about is the process of trying to determine who is at fault. At times such as this you need a team of advocates who will put your best interests first and who will fight to get you the best possible result in any litigation. Contact the experienced Seattle amusement park accident lawyers at the law offices of Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. at 888-539-9211 for a free consultation and we can immediately start the process of getting you properly compensated.