Two weeks ago, our blog discussed a tragic event in the state of New York in which two young children suffered serious personal injuries when the inflatable bounce house in which they were playing was pulled from the ground and sent 15-20 feet into the air by a strong gust of wind.
While you would think -- and hope -- that a nightmarish situation like this would be incredibly rare, a virtually identical scenario played out in Colorado this past weekend, when a strong wind gust sent an inflatable bounce house airborne, causing it to roll across a sports field and injuring two children trapped inside.
According to safety experts, these two accidents have only served to underscore what they been arguing for years: inflatable bounce houses are inherently dangerous and need to be subjected to more rigorous oversight.
Indeed, these safety experts indicate that being pulled from the ground by the wind is by no means the only hazard posed by inflatable bounce houses. By way of illustration many point to a groundbreaking 2012 study performed by the Center for Injury Research and Policy that was published in the medical journal Pediatrics.
The researchers reached the following conclusions:
- In 2010, an average of 31 children per day were treated in emergency rooms across the U.S. for injuries related to inflatable bounce houses.
- The average patient was seven years old, and suffered some sort of fracture or sprain involving their arm or leg.
- The most common cause of inflatable bounce house injuries was children falling inside the contraption and often into other children.
- Head and neck injuries were sustained in almost 20 percent of cases.
Safety experts indicate that the problem appears to be twofold. Firstly, inflatable bounce houses have exploded in popularity over the last few decades and are now much easier to purchase. Secondly, there is a dearth of rigorous mandatory guidelines in the majority of states covering the proper assembly and use of inflatable bounce houses.
It will be interesting to see if these two recent incidents prompt state lawmakers across the nation to consider making the necessary changes.
Stay tuned for updates ...
Consider speaking with a legal professional to learn more about your rights and your options if a dangerous or defective children's product has caused your family unimaginable grief and anxiety here in California.
Source: Time, "Bounce house injuries become an 'epidemic'," Katy Steinmetz, June 2, 2014