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Trampoline injuries can cost families up to $100,000 in TX

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A trauma director at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo shows an X-ray of a fracture that happened in a jump gym in 2013. Utah enacted regulations to requires the operator of a trampoline park to obtain a business license. A local regulating authority can suspend or revoke a trampoline park’s business license for noncompliance.

Associated Press

An investigation by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram found nearly 500 reports of injuries at 21 trampoline parks in Dallas-Fort Worth since 2015.

These injuries were serious enough to call for emergency medical treatment, but the true number of injured children or adults, including cases where someone was driven to a doctor or hospital, is likely higher.

Yet, Texas has no laws that requires parks to follow basic safety precautions, undergo inspections or even carry insurance. The trampoline park industry sets its own safety guidelines through its trade association. But nothing in Texas requires any of the parks here to follow those guidelines or report injuries or deaths.

After reading the Star-Telegram’s report, state Rep. Chris Turner said he planned to research the issue further and evaluate possible options before the next legislative session.

Here is what the Star-Telegram investigation uncovered:

11 states passed laws that require trampoline parks to carry insurance and undergo yearly inspections. Republican lawmarkers in Arizona and Utah told the Star-Telegram that passing the laws made sense to keep people safe.

Kolter Jennings, a Fort Worth injury attorney who has represented families in lawsuits against trampoline parks, said if parks don’t carry insurance, families are less likely to get financial help when injuries occur. Some injuries can cost families up to $100,000 in medical bills.

Paramedics who responded to trampoline parks in Dallas-Fort Worth saw injuries that included a 3-year-old with a broken ankle, an 8-year-old with chest pains, a 30-year-old with two blown-out knees and an 11-year-old with an injured back, according to the records.

Read the full investigation story here.

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Nichole Manna is an award-winning investigative reporter for the Star-Telegram who focuses on criminal justice. Before moving to Fort Worth in July 2018, she was a reporter at newspapers in Tennessee, North Carolina, Nebraska and Kansas. She likes to spend time with her two dogs, Opie and Oliver. You can send news tips and book suggestions to nmanna@star-telegram.com or on Twitter @NicholeManna.




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