The trampoline-related death of a toddler in New Zealand has a coroner issuing a warning that child injuries associated with the favourite pastime are increasing and more regulation is needed to ensure safety.

22 month old Leo Hayne fell from a trampoline at a caregiver’s home in November 2013 and despite being rushed to hospital, died from the brain injuries he suffered.

The trampoline that little Leo was using was 3.2 metres in diameter and just under one metre from the ground. The jumping mat fully enclosed with an approved safety net.  The caregiver was also looking after three other young children and was inside checking on them when Leo was hurt.

Upon the caregiver’s return, she found the safety net had been unzipped and Leo was lying on the ground, unmoving.

Coroner Morag McDowell stated in her recent written decision on the death that Leo “was known to be an intelligent child capable of working zips like the one on the safety net.”

The Coroner also stated that there was evidence that the rate of injury and associated hospital admission rates related to trampoline injuries was increasing overall.  

Her decision made a final recommendation that more regulation surrounding trampoline use and the implementation of a public awareness program tailored to the need for supervision while children are using trampolines was important to reduce injury rates.

Image source: Getty Images

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  • We removed the safety net on our trampoline when we noticed that it was starting to get old and weak. It was giving the kids a false sense of security and I was worried that the kids would fall straight through it. We enforced only one or two children on there at a time, no other toys to land on, and supervision. The kids are back jumping in the centre of the mat again instead of all over the place, nearer the springs and edges.


  • Terribly sad accident. You have to eyes in the back of your head with kids but saying that my daughter-in-law’s 6 year old niece had her leg broken while trampolining with her father when he accidentally fell on top of her.


  • I think all the new safety gear on trampolines has made people a bit more complacent than they used to be when it comes to supervision of kids using them. We need to remember that they still have dangers even with all the safety gear.


  • The trampoline above appears to have a large gap through which a child can get on and off……or fall off. Some have sturdy zips which you close while on the trampoline – some having small gaps to climb through when it is open. You can just pull yourself onto the net, you literally have slide yourself through a samll vertical opening. If it zipped down to the base there is no way you could fall off unless it is in bad state of repair. I also wouldn’t let near as many children on at the same time as pictured above. There is too much risk af children bumping into each other and causing injuries. Used properly the are great entertainment and exercise. Some join gym clubs and learn to do it properly to avoid injuries. Some show talent and enter in competitions.

    • yes and also as everyone has stated, supervision is key.


  • I hadn’t read this news. How terrible! :-(


  • So sad, their really needs to be something to ‘lock’ the zipper


  • There really should be regulations. Tragic story.


  • This is scary – an accident, but scary.


  • Very sad to hear, trampolines are never fully safe so supervision is a must.


  • So very sad and just shows how children must always be supervised.


  • This is very sad. I never let my toddler on our trampoline without her being watched. The box does say supervise at all times


  • All young children need supervision. So sad for the carer and family.

    • It is very sad and they do need supervision as it only takes a moment.


  • Kids need to be watched and trampolines can be very dangerous


  • that is really sad and kind of a freak accident. yes those zips are easy for kids to work


  • Heart goes out to the family. Its scary to think that such damage can be done from a relatively small fall. I bet the poor woman will never forgive herself either. So very sad :(


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