Skip to main content

Two boys who fell from bounce house recovering from serious injuries

By Laura Ly, CNN
updated 2:05 PM EDT, Wed May 14, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Two boys were seriously injured when a bounce house was swept up by a gust of wind
  • Police say the house was staked to the ground and adults were monitoring the children
  • The bounce house manufacturer was investigating
  • No charges were filed in what police are calling a "tragic accident"

(CNN) -- Two young boys from upstate New York were recovering Wednesday after falling nearly two stories when a gust of wind swept up the inflatable bounce house they were playing in, police said.

The boys, ages 5 and 6, were seriously injured Monday while playing in a yard near their apartment building in South Glens Falls, New York, police said. The bounce house was swept up in a "sudden and strong burst of wind," according to a police statement.

The boys fell to the ground after the inflatable house was lifted 15 to 20 feet into the air, police said.

The 6-year-old was found in the street, and the 5-year-old was found in the apartment building parking lot, police said. The boys were airlifted to Albany Medical Center, but the extent of their injuries was not known.

A police investigation determined that several adults were monitoring the children and that the bounce house had been properly staked to the ground.

Stephanie Hansen, who lives in the apartment building, had seen the house being set up earlier Monday. She called 911 after being told about the accident.

"It was nothing that anyone did wrong," she said. "I saw the house being put up. I saw him putting all the stakes in. The parent, he just broke down. It was the saddest thing, he was blaming himself. He did everything right, it was just a freak thing."

The families of the injured boys could not be reached for comment.

Hansen told CNN that a third child, a 10-year-old girl, was also injured but not seriously. She was treated at the scene and not immediately taken to a hospital.

Little Tikes, the bounce house manufacturer, said it was investigating the incident.

"Providing safe and wholesome play experiences is of utmost importance to Little Tikes," the company said in a statement. "We are looking into what happened in South Glen Falls. ... In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers are with the children and their families."

No charges have been filed. Although an investigation was continuing, police said they considered it a "tragic accident."

South Glens Falls in a small village about 55 miles north of Albany.

Bounce house-related injuries have been increasing in the United States. A study by Dr. Gary Smith of the Columbus, Ohio-based Nationwide Children's Hospital found that the number of related injuries rose 1,500% between 1995 and 2010.

From 2008 to 2010, the rate of injuries more than doubled, according to the study, which was published in the journal Pediatrics in 2012.

In 2010 alone, 31 children were treated in emergency departments each day on average, according to the report. "That's about one child every 45 minutes," Smith, who is the director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital, said at the time.

Smith said the pattern of injuries from inflatable bounce houses is similar to injuries suffered from trampoline use. But while there are national safety guidelines for trampolines, there are none for inflatable bounce houses.

In 2012: 'Bounce house' injuries skyrocketing

In 2011: 13 injured when bounce houses go airborne in New York

CNN's Miriam Falco contributed to this report.

Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:42 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Successful launch of lunar orbiter, seen as a precursor for a planned mission to the surface of the moon, marks significant advance for the country's space program.
updated 3:15 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, shot while standing guard at Ottawa's National War Memorial, was known for his easygoing manner and smile.
updated 4:06 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Non-stop chatter about actress' appearance is nasty, cruel, hurtful, invasive and sexist.
updated 6:08 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
CEO's 30-min Putonghua chat is the perfect charm offensive for Facebook's last untapped market.
updated 11:45 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Chinese leaders want less odd architecture built in the country.
updated 4:58 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Air New Zealand's new 'Hobbit' safety video stars Peter Jackson, Elijah Wood, elves and orcs.
updated 10:14 AM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
A 15-year-old pregnant girl is rescued from slavery, only to be charged with having sex outside of marriage, shocked rights activists say -- a charge potentially punishable by death.
updated 11:33 PM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
After sushi and ramen, beef is on the list of must-eats for many visitors to Japan.
updated 12:07 PM EDT, Mon October 20, 2014
Airports judged on comfort, conveniences, cleanliness and customer service.
updated 1:48 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Scientists use CT scans to recreate a life-size image of the ancient king.
updated 5:59 AM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Despite billions spent on eradicating poppy production, Afghan farmers are growing bumper crops, a U.S. government report says.
updated 6:21 AM EDT, Fri October 24, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT