Kids love to bounce… on beds, on couches, on cushions. So much better if the bouncy thing is a real trampoline!
Bouncing is good for you, it is great exercise, not to mention tons of fun! (And, we admit it, some of your very own insurance agents are known to enjoy bouncing on a trampoline as well…)
Unfortunately, before we get too excited, our voice of reason speaks up. There are an estimated 3 million trampolines in US backyards, and injuries caused by trampolines are steadily on the rise: An average of 240,000 injuries are medically treated every year. Over 180,000 involve children aged 14 and younger. Severe spinal cord and head injuries abound.
That’s why it is very difficult to find insurance for a trampoline. If the trampoline is located on your property and somebody – whether they are invited or not – gets hurt while using it, you could be held responsible. That may mean many years of medical payments… or worse.
A backyard trampoline is considered an “attractive nuisance.” Most insurance carriers have recognized the dangerous risk exposure that comes with a trampoline.
Some carriers will go as far as to not issue a homeowner’s policy for a home with a trampoline. Others may write it only if the trampoline is inside a 6-foot fenced area with a self-locking gate.
There are certain measures you can take to keep the “bouncing-fun” as safe as possible:
- Supervise the kids as they play, and keep things from getting too wild.
- Don’t allow more than one child on the trampoline at one time.
- Don’t allow flips or somersaults.
- Install a safety net and padding on all springs and metal parts.
- Set the trampoline up away from trees, play structures, fence posts, or other obstacles.
- Set the trampoline up inside a fenced area with a locking gate.
If you are considering to buy a trampoline for your house, please be aware that you may be held liable for any injuries that may occur. Yes, a homeowner’s policy will provide coverage up to your liability limits. But now is the time to call your insurance agent to make sure that your liability limits are up to par.
Also, consider obtaining an umbrella policy. It will provide you with additional liability coverage over and above the limits on your home and auto insurance.
If you have a question about your insurance coverage, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 425.379.9200 or 888.379.9200.
We can help with insurance in the states of Washington, Oregon and Utah.
PS: Swimming pools are also considered “attractive nuisances” and are treated similarly.