PARENTS ARE BEING urged to beware of the dangers of children using trampolines, as associated injuries become more frequent.
The dangers of garden trampolines for adults is also being highlighted, especially when alcohol is a factor.
The Irish Association for Emergency Medicine (IAEM) has issued advice for parents, saying that “international evidence, particularly from North America and Australia suggests that the number of trampoline-associated injuries has doubled in the past decade”.
There have also been a number of deaths associated with trampoline use. In 2007 a woman in the US died after she suffered head and spine injuries while jumping on a trampoline. In the US the American Academy of Pediatrics has even recommended that parents do not purchase the equipment, nor allow their children to jump on trampolines in other peoples’ homes.
The IAEM has said that, anecdotally, it has seen an increasing number of pediatric trampoline-associated injuries in recent years. A study conducted at Waterford Regional Hospital in 2005 found that over a six-month period, 88 children were treated for such injuries, with 40 per cent requiring surgery.
In 35 per cent of cases the injury was caused by bumping into other trampoline users.
The IAEM is warning that only one child at a time should use a trampoline at any one time, and that they should be supervised. It’s also advised that the appropriate safety netting is put in place.
The IAEM also says that “a trampoline should never be used while under the influence of alcohol”.