Lawsuit: Daughter Fell From ‘Thrilling’ Slide, Broke Arm
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Updated 04/02/12 – 4:33 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) — A Chicago couple is suing a playground equipment manufacturer, claiming a faulty slide sent their daughter from the playground to the hospital.
As CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports, Mark and Linda Jacobs of Chicago addressed reporters at their attorney’s office Monday, about a slide they say was not properly made and caused their daughter to fall.
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“This slide has a height of 75 inches, which is much taller than what I am,” said attorney Anthony Romanucci. “So you can imagine a fall from the top for a child. It can have devastating consequences.”
Romanucci says the slide caused the Jacobs’ now-7-year-old daughter, Bridy, to suffer a broken arm and emotional distress.
The slide is called the Evos Slalom Glider, and is promoted by its manufacturer, Landscape Structures as “a thrilling ride that promotes balance and coordination.”
Bridy fell off the slide in Sauganash Park, at Rogers and Kostner avenues on the city’s Northwest Side, last June.
Mark Jacobs said the family went to the park all the time, but on that one occasion, something went wrong.
“She had been on it before and didn’t have any problems, but this time, she lost her balance, and it only takes a second,” he said.
Bridy broke her arm in three places, he said.
“Any parent out there that sees that slide should pay attention,” Mark Jacobs said.
The slide was sold to parks and schools between January 2006 and December 2011. The company has since agreed to a voluntary recall.
The slide lacks a platform on the top and does not have sides or handles, causing some children to fall. Children are supposed to straddle the slide as they slide down.
About 900 of the 6-foot slides were sold across the country.
The Jacobs family filed their lawsuit on Friday. The manufacturer of the slide is based in Delano, Minn.
The Jacobs family says they filed suit only after finding out that several other children had been injured on the slide.
“First of all, if your playground has one of these slides, if it hasn’t been removed or sealed off, please make sure the children don’t play on it,” Romanucci said. “Secondly, I think it’s important for parents just to be aware of anything their children do on playgrounds, because just because it’s at a playground doesn’t mean it’s safe.”
Romanucci is also representing another family from Elmhurst who allege that their daughter broke her femur last April when she fell off the slide.
Both lawsuits are claiming about $7,500 each for the injuries.
The CPSC injury reports say that 16 children age 8 or under suffered injuries, including 14 fractures to arms and legs, one fractured collar bone, one bruised spleen, and one bruised arm, CBS Minnesota reported.
The Sauganash Park slide has been taken down.
Landscape Structures Inc. declined to comment on the lawsuits.
“Our utmost concern is for the safety of children,” the company said in an email. “We are working in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) in the voluntary recall of the Slalom Glider due to concerns regarding falls. LSI is no longer selling the Slalom Glider.”