Chessington World of Adventures Prosecuted After Four Year Old Suffers Head Injuries In Fall

Specialist Serious Injury Lawyers Assisting Girl With Battle For Justice and Rehabilitation

12.01.2015

Dave Grimshaw, Press Officer | 0114 274 4397

The family of a young girl left with serious head injuries after a fall at Chessington World of Adventures theme park say they are relieved that the park’s owners have accepted responsibility for the incident and say they hope all public attractions will take steps to improve safety for young children.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was just four-years-old when she suffered a fractured skull, broken ribs and bleeding on the brain after falling 14ft while queuing for the Tomb Blaster ride at the theme park in June 2012.

Chessington World of Adventures Operations Ltd yesterday pleaded guilty as the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the firm over safety breaches after the girl fell through a wooden queuing platform due to a missing panel. The company was fined £150,000 plus costs.

Claire Howard, a specialist serious injury lawyer at Irwin Mitchell’s Southampton office representing the girl’s family, said:

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The family was naturally devastated after the accident and feared the worst. She suffered serious head injuries and needs specialist support and rehabilitation to help her to overcome the trauma.”

“It is unknown what her long term prognosis will be but the rehabilitation package that we have implemented gives her parents peace of mind that she is making the best possible recovery and is enabling them to get their lives back on track.

“Although the HSE prosecution is now over, the civil claim continues. She still has years of difficulty ahead of her because of her injuries and the likelihood is that she may have to live with the consequences of this incident forever.”
Claire Howard, Partner

The girl’s parents from the Isle of Sheppy, issued a joint statement after the hearing saying: “The past few years have been very tough for all the family but she has got stronger and stronger which has kept us going.

“We wanted to know exactly how this incident was able to happen and how she could fall so far while queuing for a children’s ride.

“One minute we were enjoying a fun day out and the next she is fighting for her life. We are grateful that the HSE carried out a thorough investigation and we are relieved that the criminal trial is now over and the park’s owners have accepted responsibility for the accident. This should never have happened and we hope that both Chessington World of Adventures and other public attractions learn from this to improve safety in future.”

If your child has been seriously injured, our specialist serious injury solicitors could help you claim compensation. Visit our Children's Serious Injury Claims for more information.