How to Prevent Slip and Fall Accidents at Florida Theme Parks this Summer
Whether it is for the thrill of roller coasters or the magic of Mickey Mouse, Florida residents and visitors alike throng to the state’s plethora of theme parks each year. Theme parks such as Epcot, Universal Studios and Animal Kingdom tend to get especially busy during the summer months. However, a person wandering through Hogsmeade with a Butterbeer in hand can unexpectedly fall victim to a slip and fall accident if not careful.
Theme parks can be hotspots for slip and fall accidents. According to an Orlando Sentinel study of 477 state and federal personal injury lawsuits filed from 2004 to 2008, 46 percent of people said they experienced slip and fall accidents in theme parks. They were visiting either Universal Orlando, Walt Disney World or a Busch Entertainment Corp. theme park or resort.
Such accidents can occur on rides or attractions, in shops, on sidewalks or on the streets during shows and parades. People also tend to enjoy water rides during the hot summer season. It is important to remain cautious around such rides so that one does not slip and fall due to slippery shoes or standing water nearby.
Theme park visitors should make sure to wear appropriate footwear, such as sneakers or sandals with traction. They should also steer clear of cracked or uneven walkways that look like they might need repair. Sidewalks can also have hazards such as trash, tossed food items or melting ice from a drink. In addition, visitors can hold on to railings when climbing stairs, and using entrances and exits to various attractions, in order to maintain balance.
It is easy to get swept up in the fun and excitement of Disney World, but safety requires always remembering to be aware of one’s surroundings. Taking such precautions can help prevent slip and fall accidents that can cause serious harm such as back injuries, broken bones, sprains, brain injuries and more.
Disney World and other Florida amusement parks are legally responsible for taking all reasonable steps to keep visitors safe from harm. However, state laws indicate that the burden of proof lies on the individual who suffered the slip and fall accident at the theme park. The person must gather sufficient evidence to prove that the theme park failed in its duty to ensure visitors’ safety, knew about the hazard and failed to repair it in a timely manner.
For example, in Etheredge v. Walt Disney World Co., teenager Jalayna Jones Etheredge’s ankle got pinned in a storm drain when she stepped off a parking lot curb and fell. Disney was found to be liable because the theme park’s walkway led visitors to cross the street where the storm drain was located.
Do not let the risk of a slip and fall accident taint the prospect of summer fun at Florida’s amusement parks. However, bear in mind that it is important to speak to an experienced personal injury attorney if you get hurt in a slip and fall accident in a theme park as such claims can often be complex.