Orlando and Central Florida are home to a plethora of amusement parks like the Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, Legoland Florida, and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, just to name a few. Summer is a great time to enjoy these attractions and see what new features they have to offer, but it is important to keep safety and health in mind as well.

There were 1,415 amusement park injuriesreported in 2011 and 95% of them were not considered serious. This is out of an estimated 300 million annual visitors to theme parks who take more than 2 billion rides.

Many believe that roller coasters pose the biggest safety threats at amusement parks; however, a studyfound that coasters only comprised 10.1% of theme park injuries.

Kids in particular are at risk and 1/3 of kids injured are five years old or younger. Carousels caused more than twice as many injuries, accounting for 20.9% of injuries sustained. Bumper cars caused 3.9% of injuries. The number one cause of injury was falling.

Safety is the amusement park industry’s top concern and the odds are in your favor to have a safe and fun experience. The best way to prevent injuries is to heed the advice and warnings of park officials and employees and to accompany children on the rides.

It is also vital to NEVER enter any restricted areas for any reason, as ignoring these warnings has caused fatalities in the past.

Additionally, listen to your body and know your limits. Take breaks between rides and be sure to hydrate frequently in the heat. Finally, remember the sunscreen before you head out!