As the summer holidays are approaching, many families will be attending theme parks and amusement parks around the UK. Theme parks are designed to be a fun day out for all the family, but unfortunately for some visitors, this is not always the case.
A recent study has shown that nearly 500 visitors report injuries at theme parks and funfairs in the UK each year.
The highest profile of these instances would be the incident which occurred on 2nd June 2015 at Alton Towers when 16 riders were injured on The Smiler, some suffering life-changing injuries. This showed the grim reality of what can happen when the correct risk assessments and regular maintenance checks are not undertaken.
In this case, the judge found that the safety procedures in place were ‘woefully inadequate’ and the accident was ‘needless and avoidable’. The judge also ruled that the crash was caused by the company’s ‘catastrophic failure to assess risk and have a structured system of work’. Merlin, the operator of Alton Towers, were fined £5million and victims of the accident received millions in compensation.
In addition to the failure to risk assess the rides, other common causes of accidents at theme parks include:
Inadequate maintenance of rides
Negligence of the ride operator and/or inadequately trained staff
Faulty rides or unsafe tracks
Collisions on the tracks
Inadequate signage to prevent people from going into unauthorised areas
Potholes or uneven surfaces causing slips/trips
What do I need to prove?
In order for a personal injury claim to succeed, you must be able to prove 2 elements: –
Breach of duty. This means that you must prove that the accident was not your fault and that it was caused by the negligence of the theme park, or their employee(s), who owed you a duty of care as a visitor of the park.
Causation. This means that you must be able to prove that you have suffered physical and/or psychological injury and that it was caused by the park’s breach of duty.
If the accident you were involved in was not your fault, you may be eligible to make a claim for personal injury. This is also the case for claims on behalf of children; they will simply need a Litigation Friend to act on their behalf, usually a parent or carer.
It is crucial that you find the right solicitor to deal with your claim. Here at Farleys, we operate the majority of our personal injury cases on a no-win no-fee basis. If you have suffered an accident at a theme park, contact our experienced personal injury team for a no-obligation assessment of your claim. Call the team today on 0845 287 0939, contact us by email, or use the online chat below.