The opening of two trampoline parks in Christchurch led to a surge in injuries and trips to the hospital, a Canterbury District Health Board study has found.
In the 90 days after the parks opened in August 2016, there were 602 ACC claims for trampoline-related injuries and 106 presentations to Christchurch Hospital's emergency department.
Most involved an older group of children, affected predominantly the lower limbs and were more severe than those reported from the use of domestic trampolines.
Of the injured, 36 were admitted to hospital and 26 needed surgery.
Over the corresponding period a year earlier, there were 333 claims and 37 presentations to the emergency department.
- Trampoline injury spike under investigation
- Major safety problems with most trampolines in New Zealand
Researchers also looked at the three months before the parks opened and found there were just 201 claims and 15 presentations.
The authors of the study, published in the NZ Medical Journal, say there is little in terms of recommendations from regulatory bodies on the safe operation of trampoline parks.
They say further research evidence would provide regulators with a greater base to make decisions based on participant safety.
Based on the study's findings, the authors believe that safety recommendations should include:
- notifying caregivers that trampolining carries a risk of significant injury
- restricting use of trampolines to one person at a time
- taking consideration to the placement of structures, netting and padding, and making frequent inspections
- no somersaults and flips even with foam pits and adult supervision
- ensuring supervising adults are actively observing, adequately trained and aware of the risks.