You’ve ridden them at the county fair and at festivals, but did you know a child is rushed to the emergency room every hour in the U.S. for injuries suffered on amusement park rides?
They don’t look dangerous, but Crystal Malone’s daughter Destiny got on a ride, and found out just how scary they can be.
"She had reached back to high five one of her nieces and as she was bringing it back, the wrist part got caught in the corners of the ride" said Malone.
Destiny suffered a broken arm, and she’s not alone.
Researchers at the Center for Injury Research found more than 92,000 kids were hurt bad enough on a ride to need hospital care. That’s an average of more than 4,400 kids a year.
"The most surprising part of this study is the large amount of injuries from the mall, restaurant, store, arcade-related rides," said Tracy Mehan with Nationwide Children's Hospital. "We found that a child was treated in an emergency department every day in the United States from one of these rides."
Although the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has jurisdiction over rides that are put up and taken down for fairs and festivals, regulation of fixed-site rides, like those in the mall or grocery store, are left to the state or local governments.
Mehan said they would like to see a national standard set so that there’s better enforcement.
Almost three-fourths of the mall-ride injuries occurred when a child fell in, on, off, or against a ride.
So what can parents do? Always follow all posted height, age, weight, and health restrictions. Make sure to follow any special seating order, always use seat belts and safety bars, and avoid mall rides if they are over a hard, unpadded surface.