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Public playgrounds pose accident risks for children

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Public playgrounds are popular places for families, especially during the school holidays. But sometimes, if playgrounds are poorly maintained, they can potentially be extremely dangerous places.

Basildon Council in Essex is set to be sued by a parent whose 9 year old son broke his arm when he fell from a zip wire. Jack McCann fractured his left arm due to damaged equipment. Half of the seat was missing from the zip wire and there were exposed wires on the handles. Jack realised this and tried to get off, but in doing so he fell just over two feet to the ground.

It is thought that the zip wire had been vandalised, and Mr McCann is holding the local council responsible for failing to repair it. He said: “After Jack broke his arm, I found out from a neighbour the swing had been damaged for about two months. I can’t believe it’s been left like this, but my real concerns are the health and safety of other children. All the wires are exposed and the seat looks like it has been burnt by vandals or chewed by a dog.”

Family holiday cancelled due to playground injury

The family had to cancel their summer holiday to Disneyland Paris because medical experts said that Jack may have to undergo surgery to put pins into his arm to boost healing.

Councils have a duty to maintain parks and playgrounds so as to protect the health and safety of users. In this case, the McCann are set to take action against Basildon Council for their failure to maintain the playground which led to their son’s injury, and the cancellation of their holiday.

Playgrounds pose various risks. Falls from height are common incidents as is being accidentally struck by other users. But when accidents are caused because of negligence, the fact they could have been prevented is particularly frustrating for the victims and their families.

At Stephensons, we have dedicated personal injury solicitors who specialise in handling cases where children have been injured. We also have particular expertise in pursuing cases against local authorities. Whether or not liability has been admitted, we are able to help. To discuss your case with one of our friendly experts, call us on 01616 966 229.

By personal injury solicitor and Stephensons’ Partner, Kate Sweeney