A trip to a wildlife park should be fun, exciting and enthralling. While that’s often the case, accidents in wildlife parks can happen. Whether these accidents involve animals or not, they can lead to serious injuries and illnesses. If you or your child has been injured in a wildlife park, you may be eligible to claim compensation. Our guide on wildlife park accident claims will explain the best way to start a claim and review how much compensation might be paid out.
We can make the claims process easier as we offer a free initial consultation where you can discuss your options with a specialist. They’ll offer legal advice and answer any questions you’ve got on a no-obligation basis. If your claim appears to have strong grounds and a personal injury solicitor on our team agrees to help, you’ll benefit from a No Win No Fee service. That means that legal fees will only be payable if you are awarded compensation.
To learn more about wildlife park accident claims, please continue reading. If you need our help at any point, you can call us on 0800 6524 881.
Table of contents
- Am I Eligible To Make A Wildlife Park Accident Claim?
- Examples Of Wildlife Park Accident Claims
- Common Wildlife Park Injuries
- How Much Compensation For An Accident At A Wildlife Park?
- Evidence To Support A Wildlife Park Accident Claim
- Wildlife Park Accident Claim Time Limits
- How Long Does A Wildlife Park Accident Claim Take To Settle?
- Starting The Wildlife Park Accident Claims Process
The operator of a wildlife park has a legal duty of care to take reasonable steps to keep guests, staff and visitors as safe as possible. This duty of care is established by laws such as:
These laws mean that the operator of a wildlife park must:
- Carry out risk assessments regularly.
- Ensure wild animals are kept away from members of the public.
- Ensure all fencing and gates are sturdy, secure and well-maintained.
- Provide staff with adequate safety training.
- Ensure warning signs are in place around the wildlife park.
- Fix any faults with machinery, equipment or rides within the park.
Failure to meet this duty of care could mean the operator has been negligent. Therefore, based on the information listed above, wildlife park accident claims may be possible if:
- An accident in the wildlife park occurred; and
- It was caused by the operator’s negligence; and
- You sustained injuries as a direct result of the accident.
Importantly, you must be able to prove all three criteria were true in your case. We’ll assess this as part of your free consultation but we’ll also look at the types of evidence you could use to improve your chances of being compensated later on.
Wildlife park employees could claim for any injuries sustained whilst working if they were caused by:
- A lack of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
- Poor training.
- Tiredness due to a lack of rest breaks.
- Damaged, faulty or poorly maintained equipment.
- Overcrowding in the wildlife park because of poor crowd control.
To find out more about your options, please call our team today.
As detailed previously, you could claim for a wildlife park accident caused by the operator’s negligence. Some examples of such negligence that might mean you’re eligible to claim personal injury compensation include:
- If you fell into an animal enclosure because of damaged fencing.
- Where your child was bitten or stung by an aminal that had escaped.
- If you suffered food poisoning after eating poorly prepared food in the zoo or wildlife park.
- Slips, trips and falls because of pathway defects like potholes or damaged steps or handrails around the park.
- If your child was injured while riding on a faulty fairground ride or playground ride.
- Injuries involving animals in petting farms because of a lack of supervision.
If you or your child has been injured at a wildlife park, please contact our claims team today. Even if your accident is not listed above, we’ll assess your claim as part of a free initial consultation.
While wildlife parks are generally designed with visitor safety in mind, there is always a potential risk of personal injuries when interacting with animals or navigating the park’s premises. Some examples of personal injuries that may occur at wildlife parks include:
- Bites and stings.
- Cuts and bruises.
- Head injuries (including concussions).
- Back injuries.
- Muscle strains, sprains and tears.
- Other soft tissue injuries.
Whatever type of injury you’ve sustained at a wildlife park, please contact our claims team today to see if you could be eligible to claim compensation for your pain and suffering.
Any compensation for wildlife park accidents will be based on the extent of your suffering. Therefore, until you’ve had an independent medical assessment (generally required in a personal injury claim), we can’t provide a personalised compensation estimate. However, our compensation calculator lists a number of relevant injuries and their guideline compensation amounts:
On top of claims for physical and psychological injuries, you could claim for:
- Loss of enjoyment of your day out and any other activities affected by your injuries.
- Medical expenses.
- Travel costs eg the cost of getting to and from hospital appointments.
- The cost of a carer if the injured party needed support.
- Lost earnings along with future losses for longer-term symptoms.
- The cost of replacing clothing, jewellery or other items damaged at the time of the accident.
- Modifications to your home that make things easier if you’ve been left permanently disabled.
How you’ve been affected by your injuries will be discussed in detail with your solicitor so that nothing is missed from your claim.
If you take on a claim against a wildlife park, you’ll need to have enough evidence to convince their insurers about how the accident occurred, why their client was to blame and the suffering you’ve endured as a result. This can be quite complex but if you take the steps listed below, you could improve the chances of being compensated:
- Report the accident. You should visit guest services to make them aware of the accident as soon as you can. This will mean you’ll have an accident report form which can be useful evidence to prove that accident occurred.
- Take pictures. If you can do so safely, take pictures at the accident scene to make it easier to prove the cause of your injuries.
- Visit A&E. You should visit a hospital or minor injuries unit to have your injuries diagnosed properly. Your medical records can be used as evidence to prove your injuries and any treatment needed.
- Ask for CCTV footage. Most wildlife parks and zoos have CCTV cameras to protect animals, visitors and staff. You could therefore request a copy of any relevant footage to support your claim.
- Speak to witnesses. Try to secure the contact details of any independent witnesses to your accident. They may be asked to provide a statement by your solicitor at a later date.
- Keep track of any expenses. As you might be able to claim back any costs linked to your injuries, we’d suggest keeping any important receipts or invoices to prove your losses.
While your solicitor will help to collect any missing evidence if your case is taken on, it’s easier to secure vital information at the time of the accident by taking as many of the steps listed above as possible.
If your child has been injured at a wildlife park you could claim compensation on their behalf at any time before their 18th birthday as a litigation friend. After that, if you’ve not claimed, they’ll have 3-years to claim in the same way any other adult would. Usually, this limitation period will begin from the date of the accident at a wildlife park.
While there is a fair amount of time to start your claim, it can be easier to secure any evidence needed to support the claim (such as your medical records) the sooner you begin the process.
Claims can be settled fairly quickly if the wildlife park accepts liability early on. If that happens, the claim could be paid out in around 6 months or so and interim payments might be awarded to cover lost earnings, medical expenses and other immediate costs.
If more time is required to prove your prognosis or the cause of the accident, the claims process will generally take longer.
Please contact us on 0800 6524 881 if you’ve been injured in an accident at a wildlife park. During your call, we’ll review the merits of your case and if the claim is strong enough, we could introduce you to a personal injury solicitor from our team.
Remember, any claims taken are managed on a No Win No Fee basis so there’s are no upfront legal fees payable and none to pay if your claim fails. Knowing that from the start will often make your claim a lot less stressful.
Our live chat team are also available to help explain the wildlife park accident claims process so please feel free to get in touch.