Amusement Park Injuries and Florida Theme Park Lawsuits

August 6, 2010
By Dan Irving , Esq. on August 6, 2010 11:04 AM | | Comments (0)

Millions of people visit amusement parks each year in the United States. Disney is the first name that comes to mind, but there hundreds of parks in the country that draw large numbers of people as well. According to the Themed Entertainment Association, 119.1 million people visited Disney attractions in 2009. With such a large number of people visiting amusement and theme parks each year, unfortunately, injuries and deaths occur, and some stories make national headlines. Just recently, on July 30th, a 12-year-old girl from Parkland, Florida, was critically injured at a Wisconsin amusement park when the safety net in Terminal Velocity, a free fall ride, was not used properly, causing her to fall 100 feet. The girl's father says it is likely his daughter will have some paralysis, and he has filed a lawsuit against the amusement park. Police say the fall was due to operator error. The park, Extreme World, which closed down for two days following the accident, is now open again.

According to's federal data, 8,800 injuries were linked to amusement rides in 2006. Last spring, the Orlando Sentinel published a list of the top five theme park rides in Central Florida with the most lawsuits in a five-year span (from 2004 to 2008):

  1. Universal Orlando's Dudley Do-Right's Ripsaw Falls
  2. Epcot's Mission: Space
  3. Wet 'n' Wild's The Black Hole
  4. Islands of Adventure's Popeye & Bluto's Bilge-Rate Barges
  5. Hollywood Studios' Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

Florida Theme Park Lawsuits: Slip and Falls Top List

The Sentinel also published a report on personal injury lawsuits filed against Central Florida theme parks from 2004 through 2008. At the top of the list are trip or slip and fall lawsuits, which make up almost half - 46 percent - of the lawsuits filed. According to the report, it is rare that a lawsuit goes to trial; most cases are settled out of court, and the majority of settlements are kept secret. Only seven cases during this time period were tried in court.

It is important for people who have been injured in a theme park or amusement park to contact a personal injury attorney in order to understand their rights and the compensation they may be entitled to.

Dan Irving is a Florida amusement park and theme park injury lawyer. He is Board Certified by the Florida Bar and has received a 10.0 rating on AVVO, a lawyer rating service, which is the highest rating given for a lawyer. He is also rated the highest ability and ethics rating, "AV", by Martindale Hubbell, a company rating lawyers for more than 100 years.

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