The Miami-Dade County Fair and Exhibition opens March 12 and continues through April 5, 2020 (with the exception of March 16-17 and March 30-31). With the fair comes lots of excitement for friends and families to enjoy together, making memories and enjoying all the fun.
The Miami Dade Fair is also known for lots of unique entertainment and interactive experiences and this year is no different. Guests can enjoy ice skating, check out the BMX Trick Team, and cheer on their favorite in the Safari Pig Races. And, if that’s not enough, this year’s event promises lots of local performances as well as some big name headliners including Lisa Lisa, Expose, Switchfoot, Luis Enrique, and Ray Ruiz.
It’s Not All Fun and Games
While the Miami-Dade County Fair and Exhibition is lots of fun for the whole family to enjoy, like most events of its kind, danger can be lurking anywhere. Whenever so many people, animals, and machines are in one location, there is the opportunity for injury or assault on the premises. Just what happens if someone gets hurt while enjoying all the Miami-Dade Country Fair has to offer?
It’s not something you want to anticipate, but it helps to know the rules that apply to such events. In general, these rules are in place to ensure the safety of guests and employees on the premises at the event. In Florida, like every other state and locality, the rules are similar for carnivals, fairs, and even theme parks. These regulations are to be followed so that the venue can operate legally while providing a safe environment for their guests.
The thing is, you won’t likely see the waivers for any potential injuries which might occur, but on entering the venue, you’ve essentially agreed to the rules and terms with or without a warning. Your entry proclaims your agreement to enjoy the rides, shows, exhibits, and attractions, and your consent to limit your liability to file a suit against the owners should an injury occur at the venue.
If an injury does occur at the Miami-Dade County Fair and Exhibition, the owners/operators of the event would be called upon to address any question of negligence. It is for this reason, that should you be injured at the event, details leading up to your injury should be documented.
At the fair, interactive attractions can mean park employees may touch you should you choose to participate. But should be you be injured or assaulted by an employee, the fair may be liable for the assault.
In the area of rides, games, shows, and attractions, inside or out, the fair should have the necessary permits to operate the attraction. For example, if it is inside a building, the fair must adhere to local building regulations and meet the fire codes for occupancy. If the attraction is outside, the proper permit is also required. At the fair, all areas should be equipped with fire extinguishers, and all exits should be clearly marked.
Common Injuries at County Fairs
Like a year-round theme park, the Miami-Dade County Fair has its own unique share of injuries common for those in attendance. As a matter of fact, The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reports nearly 50,000 injuries annually in theme parks, carnivals, and fairs. Among those injuries, children under the age of 14 account for more than half of those injuries. As ages increase, injuries decrease, but the numbers are still way to high. Common injuries are the result of a variety of causes including:
- Slip, Trip, and Fall Injuries – Slip, Trip, and Fall injuries are certainly the most common injuries at fairs, carnivals, and amusement parks. They may occur as the result of insufficient lighting, especially for events held in the evening, or tripping hazards, such as cords, steps, props, decorations, entryways, and exits. Rides, fun houses, and other attractions are designed for excitement and can disorient guests with the use of motion, fog, strobe lights, and more. Entrances, walkways, and exits, can be uneven, slippery, too narrow, or overcrowded as visitors hurry to and fro’ around the venue, jumping on and off rides quickly, and rushing in and out of attractions. Automatic doors, animatronics, crazy mirrors, and wobbly floors add to the fun, but can contribute to slip, trip, and fall injuries which in turn result in issues from simple sprains to fractures, to concussions, and even brain injuries.
- Damaged Equipment/Props or Maintenance Failure – Damaged equipment, decorations, and props, including faulty animatronics or malfunctioning equipment, could fail, hitting a guest and causing injury. The same result could occur should equipment or props fly into an audience due to equipment malfunction or performance error. Maintenance failure can also result in the failure of safety gear on rides leading to injury or death.
- Employee/Actor/Performer Error – As mentioned employee error can result in props flying into the audience and striking a guest. It can also occur if an employee or performer goes too far or acts recklessly injuring a guest or touches a guest inappropriately resulting in accusations of assault.
Is the Miami-Dade County Fair Liable if You or a Loved One is Injured During the Event?
Owners of fairs, carnivals, and amusement parks hope to attract a large number of guests, providing excitement, fun, and thrills at every turn. If all goes according to plan, they make a profit, and guests are treated to a day of fun and memory making.
If someone is injured due to negligence, the story can change. Remember, as previously mentioned, when you head to the fair with your family or friends, and enter the gates, you’ve already assumed the risk, but even so, you may have a case if you are injured at the fair.
The owners of the Miami-Dade County Fair are required to provide safe rides, games, and attractions.
This means, if you are injured due to what appears to be negligence on their part, you should seek compensation. Liability law means property owners are held responsible for the appropriate maintenance of their rides, games, attractions, and shows to ensure the safety of their guests.