Safe Kids Kansas

Preventing Accidental Injury.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 21, 2010

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

Thrill Rides Can Be Both Exciting and Safe – If Certain Practices Are Followed

Safe Kids Kansas offers safety tips for amusement park rides

Topeka, Kan. — Whether it’s flying through the air or spinning in circles – there’s something about a summer day at an amusement park that draws people of all ages. Safe Kids Kansas believes that staying safe and having fun can and should go hand in hand.

“Parents need to use their own judgment. Posted age and height requirements are minimal guidelines,” says Cherie Sage, State Director of Safe Kids Kansas coordinator. “Following the rules is also important. If a ride operator tells you to keep your hands and feet inside the car, hold the handrail or remain seated, there’s a good reason for doing that – it helps make the ride safer.”

Every year, an estimated 8,000 children suffer injuries from amusement park or carnival-type rides that require treatment in an emergency room. These injuries involve fixed rides, mobile rides, inflatables and other types of rides at amusement parks, festivals, traveling carnivals and other locations.

Portable carnival rides are subject to safety regulations enforced by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission. Amusement park rides at a fixed location are not subject to federal safety standards. In Kansas, amusement parks are regulated by Department of Labor subject to state law.  The amusement ride owner/operator is required to carry liability insurance, but there is otherwise no state government safety oversight.  Parents and caregivers need to decide whether their children are capable of sitting properly on a ride and following the operator’s instructions.

Parents can follow these tips to help keep amusement park and carnival rides safer for children of all ages:

To find out about the law in your state, please visit: http://www.saferparks.org/regulation/state. For additional information about summertime safety, call 785-296-1223 or visit www.safekids.org.

Safe Kids Kansas, Inc. is a nonprofit Coalition of over 70 statewide organizations and businesses dedicated to preventing accidental injuries to Kansas children ages 0-14.   Local coalitions and chapters cover Allen, Anderson, Atchison, Butler, Clay, Coffey, Dickinson, Doniphan, Douglas, Elk, Ellis, Finney, Geary, Harvey, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Labette, Leavenworth, Marion, Marshall, McPherson, Meade, Mitchell, Montgomery, Pottawatomie, Riley, Saline, Sedgwick, Shawnee, Smith, Sumner, and Wilson counties, as well as the city of  Emporia and the Metro Kansas City Area (Wyandotte county and several Missouri counties.)  Safe Kids Kansas a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations whose mission is to prevent accidental childhood injury. The lead agency for Safe Kids Kansas is the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Visit us at www.safekidskansas.org and on Facebook.