Children love animals. They especially love wild animals, the kind they can only see in zoos or in the movies. Watching a lion or a tiger move or eat is a fascinating experience for children, and even adults are impressed to watch these magnificent beasts in action.
This is the primary allure of zoos, the opportunity to watch dangerous creatures from a safe distance. But because we want a good view of the animals, we want to be as close as we possibly can while still not putting ourselves at risk. Zoos know we want to be close, and sometimes they might not put safety first as they should.
A child was recently injured in Little Rock, Arkansas after falling into the jaguar exhibit. Jaguars are much smaller than lions or tigers, but they are still big cats, and they are still incredibly dangerous. Thankfully, none of the animals got to the child before emergency personnel responded. Unworthy of thanks, however, was the general disregard the zoo showed for safety. The child was still badly injured by the fall, suffering a skull fracture and puncture wounds from a railing.
We have no choice but to take it on faith that places like zoos and amusement parks are watching out for our safety. There is little way to guess from looking at an amusement park ride or a zoo enclosure whether there are any safety concerns. All we can do is:
- Look for damaged fencing
- Look for signs of wear and tear on any equipment
- Be aware of the past history of the zoo or park in regard to safety
- Keep our children close so we can catch them if they start to fall
Those are the things we can do to prevent injury from occurring in the first place. But there is one other thing we can do, not to prevent injury to ourselves or loved ones but to make sure that no one else is injured in the future. We must hold the zoo or amusement park to account for its negligence and that means contacting a qualified attorney to help fight your important battle.