Summer isn't over but it has come to a tragic end for the son of a Kansas lawmaker after an amusement park disaster. It's just one in a series of injuries this year that have some lawmakers questioning whether or not there are enough regulations in place to protect vacationers. In Colorado, risks may be higher than in many states, according to some personal injury lawyers.
Water Park Fatality May Be a Result of Weight Limit Concerns.
Kansas State Representative Scott Schwab acknowledged recently that his son Caleb was the victim of an accident at Schlitterbahn Park in Kansas City. The ride, "Verruckt" which means crazy in German, runs to a height of 168 feet. Schwa's son allegedly was a member of a group that may have been over maximum weight restrictions for using a tube on the ride. Yet more regulators and legislators have concerns about amusement park as a whole.
Similarities Between Kansas and Colorado Amusement Park Safety Regulations
Kansas and Colorado do not have their own inspection or enforcement arms. Rather, they rely on amusement parks to pay for annual inspections by licensed members of the National Association of Amusement Ride Safety Officials (NAARSO). The amusement park operator is supposed to document any injury that occurs that requires hospitalization or interferes with a ride's operation.
The problem, as an Associated Press reports, is the difficulty in establishing any real oversight. In Colorado and Kansas, the government is supposed to audit records at least once a year, but budget restrictions make this impossible. And Kansas is not only close by, but a hotbed of injuries: Two children fell from an aerial ride in July.
Could More Be Done?
Leave it to states like New Jersey to become more stringent. It has its own inspection staff and on-site inspectors and neighboring Pennsylvania also has required inspections and unannounced audits.
This stands in stark contrast to Colorado, Kansas and Texas where there are few if any restrictions. There are no restrictions in nearby states like Nevada and Utah as well. Amusement park operators aren't immune to the appeal of this: Verruckt was built in Kansas City because of the lack of height restrictions.
Many of these states are seeing funding shortages and budgetary issues combined with a desire to minimize the effect of government on business. Since they can differ from town to town, county to county and even state to state, there are more questions than answers at this point. After that, though, it may only be with the help of personal injury attorneys that families can seek damages on behalf of loved ones who ride on dangerous attractions.
Get Help with Your Premises Liability Case
Regardless of state statutes, personal injury attorneys like those at Anderson, Hemmat & McQuinn have helped victims of accidents caused by dangerous premises like amusement parks through the use of evidence available and other means. Call us at (303) 782-9999 or fill out the free case evaluation form today for a no-cost, hassle-free consultation about your potential case.