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Unsafe children’s rides cause 4,400 serious injuries annually

Georgia law requires that malls and businesses must keep their premises safe for all visitors, including children. Unfortunately, when it comes to the children's rides that are often found at Georgia's malls, grocery stores and other business locations, safety is all too often overlooked.

A report released in 2013 by Nationwide Children's Hospital showed that approximately 4,400 children are treated in U.S. emergency rooms each year for injuries caused by rides. This translates to an average of about 84 serious ride injuries per week, or 12 per day. The findings were based on an analysis of emergency room records from U.S. hospitals between 1990 and 2000.

According to the study, which was published in the journal Pediatrics, ride-related injuries tend to occur more frequently in summer, when kids are out of school and amusement parks are busy. During the summer months, the rate of these injuries increases to about 20 per day throughout the United States. However, ride-related children's injuries can and do occur all year round in Georgia.

Different rides, different risks

Different types of rides tend to cause different types of injuries, the study revealed, and sometimes in surprising ways. Although big rides like roller coasters are often much scarier for kids and parents alike, smaller rides like those often found in shopping centers can actually pose a bigger risk for certain types of injuries, the study suggests.

In particular, ride-related injuries at malls and other business locations were more likely to involve falls than those that took place at fairs and theme parks. While falls made up only about one-third of ride-related injuries overall, they accounted for nearly three-fourths of injuries caused by mall rides.

One factor that may contribute to this discrepancy is the fact that safety is often given a high priority at larger amusement parks, whereas business owners may be more likely to purchase and install children's rides with little thought to the risks involved. Because mall rides are often placed on hard surfaces and may not have working safety restraints, children can face a heightened risk of being hurt if they fall from or against the ride.

Owners of dangerous properties can be held liable for injuries

When a child is hurt on a ride, whether at an amusement park, mall or other business location in Georgia, he or she may be entitled to receive monetary compensation for the medical expenses and other damages that result. To learn more about your legal options if your child has been hurt by a dangerous ride in Georgia, seek advice from a lawyer experienced in child injury cases.

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