Summer Camp Injuries: What Parents Can Do

It's about that time of the year again — time to start thinking about summer camp for your children. This year, summer camps are expected to be back in full force after several years of COVID-19 restrictions. To ensure that your child has a fun but safe time at camp this year, some precautions are in order. Read on for some tips on camp safety and what to do when things go wrong at summer camp.

Safety Tips for Parents

Even if you have used the same summer camp for years, it's best to treat each year as a new experience. After all, camp personnel change, camp equipment may need updating, and your children may be taking part in new activities this year. Follow these tips:

  1. Visit the camp: Before you leave your child in someone else's hands, plan to visit. You can get a good idea of what to expect by inspecting the bunkhouses, eating facilities, recreational offerings, and more.
  2. Ask about the personnel: They should be vetted by the camp by performing background checks on each person. Those tasked with overseeing recreational activities should have the proper certifications. For instance, all the personnel at the camp should be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) techniques.
  3. Even though the COVID-19 virus is less of an issue than before, ask the camp about plans to deal with any outbreaks, testing, and sanitation practices.

Who Is to Blame for Accidents?

When a minor child is placed in the care of adults, they are responsible for their care. Children under the age of 18 are not considered responsible for their own actions and the camp itself must do everything it can to make sure that children don't get into accidents. That means they must:

  • Always monitor the campers.
  • Have emergency first-aid supplies on hand to care for injuries.
  • Make safety a priority by instructing the children in safe practices. These rules should be reinforced often, and reminder signs should be posted.
  • Constantly monitoring safety hazards and dealing with them quickly. For example, if a canoe has a leak, that boat should not be left out where children can access it and put themselves in danger. If the weather includes lightning, the campers should not be outside.

What to Know About Liability Waivers

Parents are usually required to sign a liability waiver before leaving their children at camp. However, this waiver does not insulate the camp from all responsibility. Waivers are routine but can be challenged if your child is hurt. Speak to a personal injury lawyer about your child's injury and don't allow a wavier to deter you.