In the wake of a 9-year-old Wyandotte girl’s tragic death, Oklahoma schools are rushing to remove the playground equipment that could have been responsible. Alyssa Avila, a fourth-grader, was fatally injured while playing on teeter-totter-like equipment called the X-Wave. An X-Waves looks like three teeter-totters joined end to end. They are joined by a flexible polymer material that allows the bench seats to go up and down and as many as 22 children can play together on a single X-Wave. If your child has been injured by playground equipment, contact our Oklahoma City Personal Injury Lawyers to discuss the possiblity of compensation for injuries.
Playground Injury Lawyers in Oklahoma
Alyssa was playing on the X-Wave when she fell off and landed in the mulch pit. When she tried to get back on the X-Wave, she hit her head. It is not clear what she hit her head on and her official cause of death has not been released, though there were no apparent signs of trauma.
Oklahoma school officials aren’t taking any chances and districts are rushing to remove X-Waves from playgrounds, but Alyssa’s family wants more done. Her cousin Robert Cole has said he wants the X-Wave banned from every school and park.
That may not be a bad idea. According to Thom Thompson, a playground equipment consultant, the X-Wave is a dangerous device he wouldn’t recommend to a school. Because it can hold so many children, children are likely to be falling off and trying to get back on while the device is still moving. That makes it more likely the children will be hit in the head or face while trying to get back on the seats.
DANGEROUS X-WAVE PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT
If the X-Wave was working properly and caused the death of Alyssa, then the family could be entitled to compensation from the manufacturer. According to strict product liability laws, a manufacturer is liable for design flaws that cause the injury and death of individuals properly using the device. Design flaws are inherent in the product and cause it to be unreasonably dangerous to use.
But even if all X-Waves are removed, residential and school playgrounds can be dangerous and even deadly places. According to the US Consumer Product Safety commission, an average of 200,000 visits to emergency rooms associated with residential and public playgrounds are reported each year.
While we as consumers trust manufacturers to make sure their products are safe – especially when those products are designed for children – those who fail in this basic obligation to safety must be held accountable.
CONTACT OUR PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS IN OKLAHOMA CITY
If you or someone you love has been injured on an X-Wave or other playground equipment, your legal rights should be protected. Contact a defective product liability lawyer at Atkins & Markoff immediately to schedule a free initial consultation.