Indoor trampoline park raises safety concerns in Winnipeg
Some Winnipeg parents and at least one local medical expert say they're worried about children getting injured at a new indoor trampoline park.
Sky Zone opened in August, but at least one parent says she won't let her daughter go there due to safety concerns.
"I just feel that that's a very risky situation," said Claudine Hoskins.
"She was disappointed, but she knows I've always had a real concern about trampolines."
Hoskins said the park's waiver form does not mention equipment maintenance, and she has heard of injuries happening there.
Dr. Paul Jellicoe, the head of pediatric orthopaedics at Winnipeg's Children's Hospital, says he has been seeing more injuries related to trampoline use both indoors and outdoors.
"It really worries me that we see a lot of these injuries and the numbers are only growing," he said.
"Trampoline sales and injuries associated with trampolines are increasing year on year."
Jellicoe said children under the age of six are especially prone to injury.
"We certainly don't recommend children under six use trampolines," he said.
Waiver forms required
Before anyone can use the trampolines at Sky Zone, they or their parents must fill out a waiver form accepting the risk of injury — including broken bones, sprained or torn ligaments, paralysis — and even death.
Maria Grande, a personal injury lawyer with Thompson Dorfman Sweatman, says such waiver forms are common for recreational facilities.
"What they're saying is, 'We want to bring the risk to your attention,'" she said.
In a statement to CBC News, Sky Zone CEO Jeff Platt said there is a potential for injury at the trampoline park, as with any recreational activity.
"Sky Zone has posted warning signs and guidelines to educate guests on how to fly safe," he said.
"Additionally, we have safety videos playing throughout the park and have court monitors that strictly enforce our rules on each trampoline court. We encourage all guests to have fun and fly safe."
Those who have been to the facility say they aren't concerned, saying there's a risk of injury in any activity.
Jellicoe has some advice for those who want to stay safe on trampolines: "No experimental tricks or trying out new things you may have seen on YouTube like back flips or jumping on or off it."
Sky Zone has 47 franchises across North America, including four in Canada.