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Is a School, Day Care Center, After School Program, or Camp Liable for Injuries to a Child Who Fell from Monkey Bars?

By David Wolf, Attorney Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network


Most playgrounds throughout virtually every community have monkey bars. While monkey bars are quite common, they are still dangerous especially for young children climbing on or transversing monkey bars in a playground. It takes a certain strength, dexterity, skill, and endurance to climb across monkey bars from one side of the playground to another. Because of this, children frequently fall from monkey bars to the ground of the playground area. Most falls are uneventful. The child merely brushes off the mulch, dirt, or other ground cover and then continues playing with friends on the playground. Unfortunately for some children, a fall from monkey bars can result in serious personal injuries including fractures, sprains, lacerations, and head injuries.

As a Child Injury Lawyer, I am often asked if the parents of an injured child can pursue a case or claim on behalf of the injured child for injuries sustained as a result from a fall from monkey bars. Is a school, day care center, after school program, or camp liable for injuries related to a fall from monkey bars? The answer to this question is “it depends.” Injuries resulting from a fall from monkey bars is often defended on the grounds that the monkey bars are common and there is no way to prevent every single accident or incident that takes place on a playground. Defendants argue that it is impractical and expensive to post an employee, counselor, aide, or other adult directly under the monkey bars for the entirety of the play time period.

There are a number of factors that are considered when evaluating a potential legal claim or case involving a fall from monkey bars. They include the following:

age of the child;
size of the child;
abilities of the child;
manufacturer recommendations as to age for children using playground equipment;
maintenance of playground equipment;
prior incidents of falls from monkey bars resulting injuries;
number of children playing on the playground;
capacity (number of children) on the playground;
number of adult supervisors posted in or around playground; and
other factors.

It can be challenging for a parent dealing with the aftermath of a child injury caused by a playground accident, automobile accident, school injury, or other cause. The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Playground Injuries, Sports Related Injuries, Automobile Accidents, Medical Bills and Treatment, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

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