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What You Should Know About Trampolines
Using a trampoline is promoted as fun. But the growing popularity of trampolines among 8-year-olds to adults is resulting in a dramatic increase in serious injuries - including broken necks, spinal cord injuries, and disabling head traumas, many of which result in permanent paralysis as well as death. In addition, trampolines are responsible for many less serious injuries such as broken bones, including legs, arms, and other parts of the body, as well as different types of dislocations and muscle damage.
Learn About Your Legal Rights
If You Know Someone Who Has Been Injured
- If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury as a result of a trampoline accident, you should consult with a lawyer as soon as possible to determine your legal rights. There is no charge or commitment for such a consultation. An accident that may appear to be no ones fault or your own fault could still result in economic recovery for you. Visit these pages to learn more about your legal options and managing disability related expenses. For additional information regarding your legal rights and options send an email inquiry to Ron Gilbert at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Your immediate medical response to a trampoline injury should depend upon the severity of the injury. For sprains and broken arms or legs, the victim can be taken by car to the emergency room of a local hospital. For more serious injuries, such as those involving the head, neck or spine, the victim should not be moved until emergency medical services have arrived.
- All trampoline injuries should be reported to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). We have provided a Consumer Product Injury Report form that you can fill out and which we will forward to the CPSC.
- Document all serious injuries (particularly those involving the head and spine) as well as death; recording exactly what happened, when and where, the name of the trampoline manufacturer, the product serial number, the names of responding emergency medical personnel, the name of the hospital, the treating physicians, etc.
- Responsible litigation of trampoline cases as well as adequate reporting to the CPSC has led to improved safety and standards in regard to trampoline usage and marketing. Responsible litigation also has frequently resulted in providing adequate economic recovery to provide both life care and lifetime medical expenses for those seriously injured from trampoline accidents.
Trampoline Injury Facts
- According to the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS), 246,875 medically treated trampoline injuries occur annually in the U.S. Of this total, 186,405 of these injuries occurred among children aged 14 or younger.
- According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) hospital emergency room-treated trampoline injuries almost tripled in the last decade - from an estimated 37,500 in 1991 to almost 100,000 in 1999.
- The commission has received reports of 11 deaths relating to trampoline use from 1990 to 1999. Those victims ranged in age from 3 to 43. Six were between the ages of 12 and 19.
- Falls off the trampoline often resulted in crippling injury and/or death including paralysis from spinal cord injury. Somersaults and coming into contact with other persons on the trampoline's surface likewise resulted in many serious and crippling injuries as well as death.
- Nearly two-thirds of trampoline injury victims were children 6 to 14 years of age.
- About 15% of trampoline injuries involved young children under 6 years old.
- In 1999, injuries to the leg/foot were reported most frequently, accounting for 40% of the total. Injuries to the arm/hand accounted for 29% of the total, head/face/neck accounted for 20%, and shoulder/trunk were associated 10% of the total.
- Approximately 4% of all trampoline emergency-room treated injuries result in hospitalization.
- Most trips to the emergency room are the result of jumpers colliding with one another, falling on the trampoline springs or frame, falling or jumping off the trampoline, or attempting somersaults and stunts.
Trampoline Safety Tips
- Trampolines should not be used except when there is
adequately trained supervision for the recreational activity.
- Trampolines should only be used in well-lighted areas and children should never be allowed to jump onto the trampoline from high objects.
- A surrounding net may decrease the injury rate but this has not been extensively proven yet. There is netting now available around the perimeter of trampolines. This netting has been shown to reduce the number of injuries from falls off the rampoline but should only be used with the following warnings: 1) Netting is not a substitute for adequate adult supervision; 2) Netting will not reduce nor eliminate crippling injuries and death on the surface of the trampoline itself. It has been shown to retain users in the trampoline area and for that reason alone is recommended.
- The trampoline jumping surface should be placed at ground level.
- The supporting bars, strings and surrounding landing surfaces should have adequate protective padding.
- Only one participant should use a trampoline at any time.
- Trained spotters should be present when participants are jumping.
- Somersaults or high-risk maneuvers should be avoided without proper supervision and instruction; these maneuvers should be done only with proper use of protective equipment, such as a harness.
- Use of trampolines for physical education, competitive gymnastics, diving training and other similar activities requires carefully trained adult supervision and proper safety measures.
- Competent adult supervision and instruction is needed for children at all times.
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