Zoos are supposed to be a fun-filled place for families to explore together. While they can be fun to visit, they are also filled with hidden dangers, which means that children can easily be hurt while viewing the animals. Zookeepers can be held responsible whenever they fail to provide safe conditions for their patrons.
Dangers from Animals
Many children simply do not understand that the animals on display are actually wild creatures that may harm them if they get too close. As a result, zoos have a duty of care to protect children as well as the animals by providing:
- Adequate restraints for the animals
- Appropriate warning signs
- Adequate supervision where needed
- Proper care for animals to prevent them from becoming agitated
- Animals of the right temperament
When these things are not provided, children may inadvertently enter an animal cage, or one could escape and wreak havoc on those inside the park. This could result in serious injury or even death. Posting the right warning signs is important for Zoos, as it gives children guidelines for proper behavior to be followed.
Injuries can also happen at a zoo that are not animal related. For example, children may fall whenever paths are not well maintained or there are terrain features such as large rocks that pose hazards. When visiting at night, public areas should be well lit so that people do not fall or bump into other objects. Rides such as trains should be properly maintained and patrons should also be properly supervised while on them.
Liability for Negligence
In order to prove negligence, it can be helpful to have pictures of the hazardous condition that caused the accident in the first place. When the accident involves a dangerous animal, a video of that animal behaving in an aggressive manner can go a long way toward proving that a zookeeper knew there was a high probability of an injury occurring.
A child’s injury should be reported before leaving the park so that there is documentation of the event. After that, medical attention should be sought, and then a claim filed with the park for damages. If the injury was a serious one, parents may want to consult with a personal injury attorney right away, as some parks balk at the idea of paying thousands of dollars in damages regardless of whether or not they are liable.
Failure to hire a lawyer could mean losing your case and having large medical bills to pay. It’s much better to hire a personal injury attorney how knows how to defend against zoo related injuries. Schedule a free case evaluation today by calling 713-222-1222.
*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net