Children frequently suffer injuries on playgrounds. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 200,000 children ages 14 and younger go to emergency rooms each year for playground-related injuries. Our Atlanta playground injury lawyer provides the information you need if your child was seriously hurt.
Not all playground injuries are actionable. However, in some cases, these injuries result from the negligence of those charged with supervising children or maintaining playground equipment. In other cases, the injury may be caused by a company’s failure to design or manufacture a safe product.
If your child has been injured in a playground accident in Atlanta or elsewhere in Georgia, the attorneys of James M. Poe, P.C., are available to provide a free review of your case. We can help you to determine whether you should take legal action and, if so, we can seek a just result for you and your child. Call or contact us online today to schedule your consultation.
Why Do Playground Injuries Occur?
Playground injuries can occur in many different situations. They may happen while a child is at school, in day care, visiting a friend’s home or attending a birthday party. The possibilities are endless. According to the National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS), more than half of playground injuries (51 percent) happen on public playgrounds.
According to data collected by the NPPS, these accidents tend to involve:
|Falls or equipment failure||67%|
|Hazards around but not related to equipment||8%|
|Collisions with other children||7%|
The NPPS states that 15 percent of these playground injuries are “severe,” while 3 percent require hospitalization. The CDC reports that the most common non-fatal injuries are broken bones, internal damage, concussions, amputations and dislocations. According to the NPPS, out of 40 playground-related deaths that occurred over a recent eight-year span, 27 resulted from “hangings or other asphyxiations.”
In many instances, these injuries may result from:
- Inadequate supervision – A teacher or caregiver at a child care facility may fail to keep reasonable watch over children at play. For example, a young child may be allowed to use a swing or slide that should only be used by older children.
- Negligent maintenance – The school, day care center, recreation department or private homeowner may invite children to use equipment that has been poorly maintained. For instance, the equipment may have rust, splinters or exposed nails. Chains and supports may also be broken or worn.
- Defective design or manufacture – A manufacturer may be responsible for allowing unsafe equipment to be sold and used. A playground set could be constructed from wood that easily rots, for instance, or it could feature dangerously sharp corners.
It is important to thoroughly investigate a playground-related injury in order to determine why it occurred and who might be held responsible for the harm that has been suffered by you and your child.
Legal Options After a Playground Accident
If a party’s negligence led to a playground accident and injury, a personal injury or wrongful death claim may be pursued. It will be crucial to work with a law firm that fully understands the issues that can arise in these cases.
For instance, a child injury claim may involve seeking separate damages for the child and parent, including medical expenses, pain and suffering and other damages. A guardian ad litem may need to be appointed. Additionally, any settlement negotiated with the at-fault party or parties may need judicial approval and judicial supervision of the child’s funds.
In a playground injury case, a defendant may be a school district or a city, county or state agency that operated the playground. If so, this requires the filing of ante litem notice with that agency within a specific time period. Such ante-litem time periods for notification may be short and may require action before the normal time for a statute of limitations.
It is imperative that a parent retain experienced counsel of an Atlanta playground injury attorney early so that crucial rights are not inadvertently lost by inattention or because parents were unaware of key deadlines. It may also involve complicated issues involving immunity, which may preclude any recovery.
Contact an Atlanta Playground Injury Lawyer
The law firm of James M. Poe, P.C., is committed to helping children who have been injured in playground accidents and their families. We have the skill and experience to identify and navigate the complex legal issues in such cases. We also understand the sensitive nature of cases that involve young victims.
To discuss how we may assist you, please call or contact attorneys Jim Poe and Matt Poe online today. We would be glad to schedule a free consultation.
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