You have probably heard about the tragic death of Caleb Thomas Schwab, the 10-year-oldboy who lost his life on the “Verrückt,” also known as the tallest water slide in the world. While the investigation is still ongoing, authorities have released details that the boy suffered a fatal neck injury after riding the slide. The slide’s safety itself is questionable, as the raft requires a minimum of 400-500lbs, or else it runs a risk of flying off the 168ft 7inch drop. It is unknown if the raft carrying Caleb Schwab met that weight requirement. Another unrelated woman in the raft was injured in the incident. At Todd Durham Law Firm, we believe it is a good practice to understand the park’s liability, as well as the assumed liability people take when taking part in amusement park rides.
Duty of Amusement Parks
Amusement parks have a duty to patrons to operate the equipment in accordance with local, state, and federal safety regulations. That means they must provide regular maintenance and safety checks to ensure that the rides and attractions they have opened to the public will not cause injury. Their employees have a duty to operate the rides properly and comply with all operation regulations. Failure to meet these duties will inevitably result in injuries that they should be liable for.
Assuming the Risk
Many amusement parks defend themselves using “assumption of the risk,” meaning that patrons understand that some risks come with riding attractions, like Verrückt. Some may even have you sign a waiver prior to riding. Even if you sign a waiver, this does not negate their duty to have the ride properly maintained and meet safety regulations. It is important that when you have been injured in an amusement part that you immediately contact an attorney.