Accidents at California Water Parks and Liability
This summer, you’re planning on taking your kids to the water park and your local splash pads and swimming pools. While you’re excited to cool off and have fun with your family, you’re wondering: What happens if you or one of your children gets injured? Who will be responsible? By learning about accidents at water parks and liability, you can determine who should provide you with compensation should an accident occur.
Southern California personal injury lawyers Heiting & Irwin have over four decades of experience assisting clients with personal injury. We have retrieved more than $400 million for our clients, and we’ll work hard to get you the recovery that you deserve, whether by settlement or by trial.
Water Park Accident Liability
If you get into an accident and are injured at a water park, or your local park – whether it’s a slip and fall or some other kind of personal injury – you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation. It all depends on the circumstances surrounding how the injury happened.
Under premises liability law, a property owner has a duty to you and your fellow patrons to act with reasonable care and keep the water park or park safe. Reasonable care could apply to hazards the owner or the employees know about or should have known about.
They could include:
- Putting up signs warning of any dangerous condition
- Moving pool toys and other debris out of the way
- Properly maintaining the facilities, including the rides
- Training employees on how to operate and maintain rides and the park in general
- Installing fencing or barriers around unsafe areas
- Communicating dangers to patrons and keeping patrons safe
- Doing inspections to ensure facilities and rides are safe
If a water park or park owner failed in their duties when it comes to premises liability, they could be responsible for all your injuries and all your resulting damages. Premises liability is not always simple, though. For instance, if there was a “wet floor” signed and a customer knocked it over – then you slipped and fell five minutes later – it may be that that the water park would not be responsible (but even these facts need to be examined thoroughly).
It is possible that the accident and injury were at least partly your fault; but even if the accident was partly your responsibility, it is still possible you could receive some sort of compensation. You’ll need to explore the facts with a personal injury lawyer for answers.
Types of Water-Related Accidents
When you combine water and children, there are so many accidents that could happen. If there is alcohol available at a water park, or the employees are seasonal and not trained properly, there could be an even higher chance of accidents and injuries taking place.
Some water-related injuries include:
- Slip and fall injuries
- Drowning injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal organ damage
- Spinal cord injury
- Traumatic brain injury
These injuries may happen because someone was inattentive to their job or to the conditions facing the patrons, or due to a defective ride. For instance, a water slide may have a screw missing and it falls apart, sending a rider onto the ground instead of into the water. A pool might not have a fence around it, and a small child falls in and cannot swim, a lifeguard or another employee is not on duty when they should be, this could also lead to serious injuries and a valid claim for damages.
Proving Liability in a Water-Related Accident
To prove liability in a water-related accident, we need evidence to support your claim. This means that as soon as your accident happens, you (have somebody) take pictures of the scene of the accident, damage to your belongings, and your visible injuries. You should also report the accident to an employee in writing and get a copy for your own records. Make sure you gather witness statements and the contact information for witnesses in case you need more information later on.
As soon as you can, write down the details you remember about the accident and getting injured, including what led up to it. Also write down the locations of any cameras so that we can attempt to collect the video footage.
Get medical attention as soon as possible so that you can get treated (and have a medical record of what occurred). Get a full-check up and X-rays. Do what your doctor tells you to – don’t fall behind when it comes to your care. Fill your prescriptions and go to all follow-up and referral appointments.
Taking Legal Action After an Accident
The statute of limitations for personal injury in California is generally two years. This means that within two years, you need to initiate your lawsuit, or else you won’t be able to take legal action. For public bodies (for example State or County or City-run properties) the time limits are much less, as short as 6 months.
You should aim to get in touch with a lawyer as soon as your accident occurs. Then, you’ll have a much better chance of getting compensation. Take your injuries seriously. Plus, you’ll remember the details of your accident more clearly and be more likely to get the evidence you need to support your claim if you get it secured by seeing a lawyer right away.
Always keep in mind that if you’re initiating a claim against any government entity or body, you will need to act much sooner. There is typically a much shorter time period when it comes to government-owned property, such as a local park.
To ensure that you meet any deadlines, call a personal injury lawyer as soon as you can after you get injured. If you hear from the property owner’s insurance company in the meantime, they may try to get you to say the accident was your fault. Don’t tell them about your injuries or give them any details about the accident. Instead, call a lawyer for assistance.
You could potentially receive compensation for your injuries, damage to your belongings, a loss of wages from taking time off from work (past and future), loss of enjoyment of life, all your medical expenses, and more.
You need to focus on healing from your injuries while your lawyer does the hard work. Unless you get a settlement, there is absolutely no fee. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Get in Touch With Heiting & Irwin for Help
If you or your child got injured in a water-related accident, then it’s time to find a personal injury lawyer to represent you. Heiting & Irwin are here for you. We have dealt with many personal injury cases and will work hard to get you the settlement that you deserve. Contact us online at hilegalgroup.com or call us at 951-682-6400 to initiate your case now.