City trampoline injuries high

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Trampoline injuries in Dunedin continue to soar at a greater rate than the national average, despite the city rebounding from a spike in injuries.

Accident Compensation Corporation data reveals there were nearly 13,500 claims for trampoline injuries made in New Zealand last year .

Since 2013, the number of claims made in New Zealand had risen 52%.

In Dunedin last year, 338 claims were made, up 72% on the 2013 figure. However, the total was down 27% on the 463 lodged in 2015.

Dunedin people continue to injure themselves on trampolines this year, with 43 claims lodged in January and 23 last month.

Corporation spokesman James Funnell said most of the claims were for injuries when people fell off trampolines, landed awkwardly on the trampoline mat or collided with other people when bouncing on the trampoline together.

The parts of the body injured “covered the spectrum” but were mostly legs, ankles and knees.

Other injured body parts included arms, elbows, shoulders, head, eyes, teeth and mouth.

Of the 338 claims in Dunedin last year, 39% of the injured were aged 10-14, 22% were 5-9, 12% 0-4 and 6% 15-19.

Kaikorai Valley College pupil Riley Dasler (15), of Corstorphine, plays on a trampoline which has no safety netting or pads.

The worst injury he has had on the trampoline was failing to land a backflip and landing into the springs. One of his legs was badly bruised after getting caught between two springs but the injury did not require a claim to be made.

University of Otago injury prevention research unit deputy director Gabrielle Davie, of Dunedin, said the popularity of trampoline parks would have increased children’s physical activity, enjoyment and exposure to injury risk.

The American Academy of Pediatrics discouraged recreational trampoline use but has a number of recommendations for safer trampolining, including restricting use to a single jumper on the mat, she said.

Academy studies revealed three-quarters of injuries happened when more than one person was using a trampoline at the same time.

Other recommendations included adequate padding, setting trampolines at ground level, active supervision and prohibiting somersaults and flips.

SafeKids Aotearoa director Melissa Wilson, of Auckland, said the organisation was advocating the introduction of safety standards for trampolines in New Zealand.

SafeKids Aotearoa was concerned cheaper trampolines with “shortcomings” in safety measures were available on the market, Ms Wilson said.

The organisation was established in the early 1990s by Starship Children’s Health Trauma Service to help reduce the high rates of preventable injury to children.

 

TRAMPOLINE INJURIES

Claims to the Accident Compensation Corporation

Year – Dunedin – New Zealand

2013 – 196 – 8852

2014 – 177 – 10,127

2015 – 463 – 11,781

2016 – 402 – 13,172

2017 – 338 – 13,469