The U. S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) wants you and your family to be safe when using trampolines. The CPSC estimates that in 1998 there were 95,000 hospital emergency room-treated injuries associated with trampolines. About 75 percent of the victims are under 15 years of age, and 10 percent are under 5 years of age. Since 1990, CPSC has received reports of 6 deaths involving trampolines. The hazards that result in injuries and deaths are:
- Colliding with another person on the trampoline.
- Landing improperly while jumping or doing stunts on the trampoline.
- Falling or jumping off the trampoline.
- Falling on the trampoline springs or frame.
Almost all of the trampolines associated with injuries were at private homes, usually in backyards. Most of the injuries occurred on full-size trampolines.
Here are the steps you can take to help prevent serious trampoline injuries, especially sprains, fractures, scrapes, bruises, and cuts.
- Allow only one person on the trampoline at a time.
- Do not attempt or allow somersaults.
- Do not allow trampoline to be used without shock-absorbing pads that completely cover the springs, hooks, and the frame.
- Place the trampoline away from structures and other play areas. Use shock-absorbent material on the ground around the perimeter.
- Do not use a ladder with the trampoline because it provides unsupervised access by small children. No child under 6 years of age should use a regular-size trampoline. Secure the trampoline to prevent unauthorized and unattended use.
- Always supervise children who use a trampoline.
Editor's Note: Keep in mind that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that 'parents should never purchase a home trampoline or allow children to use home trampolines' and that even when supervised, children under age 6 years should not be allowed to use a trampoline.
Reproduced from CPSC Document #085