Unfortunately, many children continue to suffer from trampoline-related injuries. The Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics (JPO) estimates that between 2002 and 2011, there were over 1 million emergency room visits for trampoline-related injuries. The JPO notes that of those patients who sustained fractures, 92.7% were aged 16 years or younger.
Additionally, between 2000 and 2009, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) received reports of 22 deaths involving trampolines. The CPSC notes that trampoline-related injuries and deaths have typically been caused by:
- Colliding with another person on the trampoline
- Landing improperly while jumping or doing stunts on the trampoline
- Falling or jumping off the trampoline
- Falling on the trampoline springs or frame
Most of these injuries occurred on full-size trampolines. Here are the steps you can take to help prevent serious trampoline injuries, especially sprains, fractures, scrapes, bruises, and cuts:
- Allow only one person on the trampoline at a time
- Do not attempt or allow somersaults
- Do not allow a trampoline to be used without shock-absorbing pads that completely cover the springs, hoods, and the frame.
- Place the trampoline away from structures and other play areas
- Do not use a ladder with the trampoline because it provides unsupervised access by small children. No child under 6 years of age should use a full-size trampoline
- Always supervise children who use a trampoline
As a final matter, many insurance companies will no longer cover trampolines under homeowners insurance policies. Some carriers will exclude trampolines from their policies, leaving a homeowner subject to personal liability for a trampoline-related injury. Other carriers will not allow a homeowner to have a trampoline and will cancel coverage upon discovering otherwise.