Amusement Park Injury Lawyer


If you’ve been injured or have suffered the wrongful death of a loved one due to amusement park negligence, Sotiriou Wilmowski wants to hear from you. Call us at 314-925-1000 or reach out through our online contact form to tell us about your experience.

For many people, amusement parks and theme parks represent the ultimate leisurely experience, where families of all backgrounds can seek thrills and new experiences in a safe and comfortable environment. Many families spend years saving up for a one-in-a-lifetime trip to places like Walt Disney World or Universal Studios to create meaningful family connections and lasting childhood memories.

Unfortunately, this investment is not always returned. In 2019 alone, Americans experienced 1,299 injuries at amusement parks, not only costing victims hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical expenses but also shattering the idea of assumed safety in these seemingly wholesome family establishments.

Seeking the compensation you deserve for injuries sustained at an amusement park or carnival may seem daunting at first glance, but many parks want to make right on incidents that occur in their parks and want to avoid bad press at all costs. Our Missouri and Illinois-based lawyers can help you collect evidence and documentation of your injuries, file paperwork, and communicate with liable parties on your behalf so that you and your family can heal from the trauma you’ve endured while on vacation. Call Sotiriou Wilmowski at 314-925-1000 or reach out through our online contact form and we’ll get started today.

Common Amusement Park Injuries

There are an infinite number of ways a memorable day at an amusement park can turn into a nightmare that you wish you could wake up from. Below are a few of the most common types of injuries that our firm has seen firsthand.

  • Whiplash and Neck Injuries: Often associated with roller coasters and other high-speed rides.
  • Head Injuries: Resulting from falls, collisions, or sudden stops on rides.
  • Broken Bones and Fractures: Caused by falls, malfunctioning equipment, or inadequate safety measures.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries: Such as sprains, strains, and torn ligaments from sudden movements or impacts.
  • Cuts, Scrapes, and Abrasions: Due to sharp edges, poorly maintained equipment, or flying debris.

In more drastic scenarios, the injury may be so severe that the victim suffers a coma or death. While there are only an average of 4.5 amusement park fatalities reported every year, these incidents are becoming more and more common.

When amusement park accidents occur, it’s important to seek immediate medical attention and to document your injuries and interactions to the best of your ability. Doing so will not only ensure a speedy recovery, but will also help your personal injury case in the event that your injuries are determined to be caused by a second party.

Types Of Amusement Park Accidents

Now that we have an idea of what types of injuries can occur at theme parks, let’s take a look at the types of amusement park accidents our clients have suffered and how they occur in the first place.

  • Ride Malfunctions: Mechanical failures or structural defects in rides can result in sudden stops, collapses, or derailments.
  • Slip and Fall Accidents: Wet surfaces, uneven terrain, or debris can cause visitors to slip, trip, and fall.
  • Collisions: On crowded rides or attractions, collisions between riders or with stationary objects can occur.
  • Ejection from Rides: Failure of restraints or safety devices can lead to riders being ejected from moving attractions.
  • Drowning Incidents: In water parks or attractions with water features, such as Seaworld, drowning accidents can happen due to inadequate supervision or safety measures.

This is a very brief collection of ways that amusement park accidents can happen, but there are hundreds of other ways that you or a family member may be injured at an amusement park. Regardless of how it happened or how serious your injuries may seem, it’s always a good idea to follow through with a qualified personal injury lawyer.

If you have any questions concerning your accident at an amusement park, Sotiriou Wilmowski would like to hear from you. We can help you understand who was liable in your specific case, and what your options are for seeking compensation. Call our law firm at 314-925-1000 or reach out through our online contact form for a free consultation, and we’ll get started today.

Let us help you

As former insurance defense lawyers, personal injury attorneys Deme Sotiriou and Tom Wilmowski of Sotiriou Wilmowski pride themselves on using their inside knowledge of the insurance industry to obtain maximum value — and often more — for their clients.

Causes of Amusement Park Injuries

As discussed in the previous sections, there are endless ways that an amusement park accident may happen, but as amusement park injury attorneys, our job is not just to understand how amusement park accidents happen, but also why. In most cases, the simple answer is usually negligence. Below are a few ways this negligence has manifested for many of our clients over the last 15 years.

Mechanical Failures

Mechanical failures in amusement park rides can be catastrophic, posing significant risks to riders’ safety. These failures may stem from issues such as faulty components, worn-out parts, or inadequate maintenance practices. A malfunctioning ride mechanism can lead to sudden stops, unexpected movements, or structural collapses, putting passengers in imminent danger. In order to reduce mechanical failures, rigorous inspection protocols, regular maintenance schedules, and adherence to industry safety standards must be commonplace. Amusement park operators must prioritize the integrity and reliability of ride systems to minimize the likelihood of accidents and ensure the well-being of park visitors.


Amusement park injuries don’t necessarily always happen as a result of a ride gone horribly wrong, sometimes these injuries happen because too many people are allowed inside the park at one time. These human stampedes can often result in visitors getting trapped underneath the foot traffic, especially when young children are present. Overcrowding in amusement parks can also lead to confrontations or assaults, which come with their own set of serious injuries if not handled correctly by staff.

Operator Error

Operator errors are another critical factor contributing to amusement park accidents. Inadequate training, negligence, or lapses in judgment on the part of ride operators can result in serious consequences for riders. Whether it’s from failure to properly secure riders or allowing riders to enter prohibited areas, operator errors can compromise the safe operation of rides and attractions. Comprehensive training programs, ongoing supervision, and stringent performance evaluations are essential to mitigate the risks associated with operator error and must be routine to maintain the safety of guests.

Ride Design Flaws

In certain circumstances, amusement park accidents may have more to do with the design of the ride itself, rather than a mistake made by a ride operator. Poorly conceived or executed ride designs may result in structural weaknesses, inadequate restraints, or unanticipated stressors on riders’ bodies. Identifying and rectifying design flaws necessitate collaboration between engineers, architects, and safety experts to assess ride dynamics, structural integrity, and ergonomics. If these standards aren’t met, the results can be disastrous.

Liability In Amusement Park Accidents

In other types of accidents, such as a car accident or truck accident, liability is usually a 50/50 shot–either Driver A is liable, or Driver B is liable. However, in multi-billion dollar establishments that employ millions of operators, vendors, and managers, naming the liable party for accidents that occur on the premises isn’t always as cut and dry.

Amusement Park Ownership

In most cases of amusement park accidents, liability will fall on the park owners who are expected to maintain the safety of their park by enacting effective safety measures and performing regular upkeep of the premises. According to premises liability law, owners who maintain a role of regular presence at the park can be held liable for individual accidents when they occur if evidence is shown that they failed to keep their parks safe.

In some cases, staff members such as security or ride operators, may find themselves liable in these incidents if the evidence shows that they contributed to the accident occurring through negligence, or ignoring safety training provided by the park owner. A case may be further made for sole staff liability if the owners simply owned the park but did not play an active role in the management of the park itself.

Ride Manufacturers

Ride manufacturers also play a significant role in determining liability for accidents at amusement parks. If an accident is caused by a defect in the design, manufacturing, or maintenance of a ride, the manufacturer may be held accountable for any resulting injuries or damages. Manufacturers are expected to adhere to strict safety standards and regulations to ensure the reliability and safety of their products.


Vendors operating within amusement parks can also be implicated in accidents that occur on the premises. Whether it involves food and beverage vendors, souvenir shops, or other service providers, vendors have a duty to maintain safe and hazard-free environments for patrons. If negligence on the part of a vendor contributes to an accident, they may share liability with other parties involved.


Ultimately, visitors themselves also bear some responsibility for the safety of others while enjoying amusement park attractions. While parks are obligated to provide a safe environment, visitors must adhere to safety guidelines, follow ride instructions, and exercise caution while on the premises. Failure to do so may result in visitors assuming partial or full liability for accidents that occur due to their own actions or negligence, especially if they involve violating park safety protocols or criminal actions such as assault or violence.

Steps To Take After An Amusement Park Accident Or Injury

Whether your injuries are serious or relatively minor, the most important step is to seek immediate medical attention. If you’re able to do so, identify witnesses and exchange information. The final step before deciding whether or not you want to pursue financial or emotional damages is to document your injuries throughout your recovery period by taking pictures, making journal entries, and most importantly, collecting medical records. Our legal team can help you with this documentation process and collaborate with witnesses and medical professionals on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery.

Once all evidence and documentation are collected, our accident attorneys will file the necessary paperwork needed to initiate the process for seeking damages. In most cases, especially those with many layers of compounding evidence, amusement parks prefer to settle out of court, and victims rarely need to set foot inside a courtroom.

Hire a St. Louis amusement park lawyer

Millions of dollars are spent by families at amusement parks every year, but injuries continue to increase. Many would assume that amusement parks invest gratuitously in their safety departments, but the truth of the matter is that many amusement park owners simply choose to cut corners.

If you’ve been injured as a result of negligence at an amusement park, or you are the surviving loved one of a park visitor who is in a coma or has passed away due to an amusement park injury, Sotiriou Wilmowski is here to help you claim the compensation you’re duly owed and take back your sense of safety. Call our law firm at 314-925-1000 or reach out through our online contact form for a case evaluation and a personal injury attorney will be in touch with you immediately.

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Committed to advocating for the Injured. Get the legal guidance you deserve, reach out to our team and get a Free Consultation today!

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