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Negligent Security Seminar | March 2015

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Newly Updated Report Lists Injuries Suffered by Visitors at Florida Theme Parks

After a year of minimal travel, many people are eager to get out and visit their favorite destinations. For Florida locals and visitors alike, these destinations often include the state’s famous theme parks, such as Disney World, Sea World, and Busch Gardens. While a trip to a theme park can be a fun and entertaining way to make memories with friends and family, visitors may not be aware of the potential dangers lurking in the parks’ thrill rides. In reality, thousands of people are injured each year at amusement parks nationwide, and many of these injuries are serious enough to require hospitalization, and in some cases, can even result in death.

With its Memorandum of Understanding Exempt Facilities Report, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Customer Service attempts to shed light on the types of injuries that occur on amusement rides. The newly updated report, which dates back as far as 2001, features incidents from the first quarter of 2021. For example, recent injuries have included a 25-year-old rider who suffered a hip injury on Ihu’s Breakaway Falls at Sea World, a 69-year-old who injured her ankle on Disney’s Gran Fiesta Tour, and a 42-year-old who experienced syncope (fainting) after riding the Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal.

The parks mentioned above and others that have permanent facilities, at least 1,000 full-time employees, and full-time, in-house safety inspectors are exempt from inspection by the state but are required to report serious injuries that result in at least 24 hours of hospitalization. However, since the injuries are self-reported by the theme parks, critics have raised concern that the incidents are often described vaguely or even downplayed. As a result, even those who take the time to read the Department of Agriculture’s report may not get a comprehensive, unbiased view of the severity and frequency of injuries.

As much as visiting a theme park can feel carefree, it’s important to always prioritize safety and be mindful of potential hazards. If you or a loved one has been injured at a Florida theme park, speaking with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible can help you determine whether you may be able to seek recovery based on the park’s negligence. At Leighton Law, one of our specialties is representing those who have been injured due to a theme park’s negligent operation or maintenance of a ride. We have handled many cases against theme parks and won verdicts against Walt Disney World in court.  Call us today at 888.988.1774 to speak to an attorney!

Article by:

John Leighton

A nationally-recognized trial lawyer who handles catastrophic injury and death cases. He manages Leighton Law, P.A. trial lawyers, with offices in Miami and Orlando, Florida. He is President of The National Crime Victim Bar Association, author of the 2-volume textbook,Litigating Premises Security Cases, and past Chairman of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Motor Vehicle, Highway & Premises Liability Section. Having won some of the largest verdicts in Florida history, Mr. Leighton is listed inThe Best Lawyers in America (14 years), “Top Lawyers” in the South Florida Legal Guide (15 years), Top 100 Florida SuperLawyer™ and Florida SuperLawyers (14 years), “Orlando Legal Elite” by Orlando Style magazine, and FloridaTrend magazine “Florida Legal Elite

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