Bounce house injuries soaring in recent years

Posted at: 11/26/2012 9:25 PM
Updated at: 11/27/2012 8:05 AM
By: Amanda Ciavarri

There are mixed reactions from parents about a recent study that says inflatable bounce houses can be dangerous for kids. There are a big hit at birthday parties, but a new nationwide study shows that number of injuries that come from kids playing on them are soaring.

Anyone with children has probably seen it, kids crowding into bounce houses, jumping up and down on them, sending other children flying into the air.

The study suggests 30 children a day, across the country, are treated in emergency rooms for broken bones, sprains, and concussions from bounce house accidents. Doctors say they aren't surprised, but these numbers don't have all parents convinced to stay away.

David Hastings said, “They crack into each other and there is really no way to prevent that from happening. I think they are fun for the kids but I think they are dangerous as well.”

Parents like David Hastings say they know the dangers, but still let their kids go into the bounce house.

According to a study done by a government group aimed at injury prevention, the
number of teens and children 17 and younger who got emergency room treatment for bounce house injuries has jumped from fewer than 1,000 in 1995 to nearly 11,000 in 2010.

Dr. Louis Papa, University of Rochester Medical Center, said, “That is pretty significant and I think it probably comes down to the fact it's just increase usage. I mean we see a lot more of these things, they have become very popular for birthday parties and celebrations .”
Dr. Louis Papa says he isn't surprised with the results of the study, but was surprised at how the study says kids are getting hurt.

Dr. Papa said, “I thought most of the injuries would come from kids falling on top of one another, but that wasn't even half of them, it was less than half of the kids. A good bulk of these cases were just individuals falling inside the bouncers. So that is another message for parents, just because they are inside the bouncer and alone doesn't mean its totally safe.”
While some parents say they don't see any extreme dangers

Debra Ross said, “I'm kind of one of those free range moms who knows that they can be kind of sensible about their choices and when you think about what the risk might be, I don't even, suppose the bump heads with somebody, man ya know how much they bump heads by themselves at home.”

Hastings says he's still going to keep a close eye..

Hastings said, “You hope you've taught them well enough to be careful and not too rambunctious but that's really kind of the anti thesis of what goes on in those things cause they are trying to get crazy and smash into each other .”

News10NBC reached out to local businesses that run bounce houses or rent them out, and they had no comment on the study.

Only about three percent of children nationwide were hospitalized, mostly for broken bones. More than one-third of the injuries were children aged 5 and younger.