Playground Accident Liability in Florida
Most of us remember falling off of the monkey bars as children or scraping ourselves while playing on a jungle gym or slide. Although these falls and accidents may have proven to be painful at the time, they often only required the use of a band aid or an ice pack. Unfortunately, many children are not so lucky and sustain serious life-altering injuries while using playground equipment. When these accidents are the result of someone else’s negligence, it is often possible for the injured party to recover compensation for accident-related losses, including reimbursement for medical bills and pain and suffering.
However, collecting compensation in these types of cases can be difficult, as many playgrounds are operated by cities, counties, states, and educational institutions, some of which are immune from liability, so if your child was recently injured on a playground in Florida, it is important to contact an experienced premises liability attorney who can explain your legal options.
Most negligence-based playground accidents can be linked in some way to the use of defective equipment, negligent supervision, or improper design. Typical at-fault parties include:
- Playground equipment manufacturers;
- Playground equipment retailers;
- School employees;
- The cities and counties responsible for maintaining the playground in question; and
- The playground’s operator, including supervisors.
For help determining which, if any of these entities or individuals was at fault for your own child’s playground accident, please contact our legal team today.
Playground Equipment Manufacturers
Ultimately, the cause of an accident will dictate who can potentially be held liable for a playground injury. If, for instance, a child fell off of a playground platform due to the fact that the railings on the jungle gym were not tall enough to prevent injury, the company responsible for designing the equipment could be held liable for damages. Similarly, if a child was injured after falling off of a swing because the screws used to attach the chains were insufficient, the equipment manufacturer who actually produced the swings could be held legally responsible for its manufacturing defect.
Under Florida law, school employees are required to ensure the safety of their students, which includes a duty to exercise reasonable care while supervising children on a school playground, so if a court determines that this duty was not fulfilled, school employees, administrators, and even the board of education could be held liable for damages. Aside from inadequate supervision, common examples of school negligence that could result in a playground accident includes inadequate security, poor lighting, and a failure to provide proper training.
Most public parks in Florida are maintained by local governments, which are usually protected from lawsuits by governmental immunity. It is still possible, however, to hold a city or county responsible for a playground accident if there is evidence that the injury was the result of:
- Improperly installed playground equipment;
- The use of banned playground equipment;
- A poorly designed playground; or
- Improper maintenance.
Even in these cases, an injured party will only be able to recover compensation for a playground injury if he or she complies with strict filing deadlines.
Obtain Legal Assistance Today
For help determining what remedies are available to you following a playground accident, please contact the dedicated Fort Lauderdale premises liability attorneys at Boone & Davis today. A member of our team can be reached at 954-566-9919 or via online message.