Research shows that hundreds to thousands of people suffer mechanical bull injuries each year in the United States. Many of these injuries are severe and can lead to costly medical bills and lawsuits.
Mechanical bull operators can always protect themselves by following proper safety protocols. Additionally, purchasing mechanical bull insurance is critical to protect against financial losses.
By focusing on safety and maintaining an adequate insurance policy, mechanical bull operators are less likely to face significant losses from financial damages from accidents and injuries.
Safety Considerations When Operating Mechanical Bull
Maintaining appropriate safety standards is necessary when operating mechanical bulls. Operators should adopt the standards provided by the equipment manufacturer while also implementing specific standards for all mechanical bull businesses.
Set Age Limits or Train Operators to Work with Children
Some mechanical bull operators only serve adults, but many allow children as young as 3 to ride. Unfortunately, untrained operators treat children and adult riders equally, putting kids at risk of significant injuries.
According to research, children often suffer head injuries when they’re thrown off mechanical bulls. The bull often connects with their heads when they get up after falling. Operators can reduce the risk of injuries by using slower speeds for children, making them less likely to fall off. They can also limit the severity of bucks and spins when operating the ride.
Put Rider Guidelines in Place
Operators must establish guidelines for customers who want to ride the mechanical bull. First, mechanical bulls have weight limits and height restrictions for riders. It’s wise to post these restrictions and ensure operators enforce them.
Mechanical bull operators should not allow people who are pregnant or have certain health conditions, such as neck problems and epilepsy, on the ride. Also, people who are under the influence of drugs and alcohol should not be allowed to mount and ride mechanical bulls.
The risk may be mitigated by only allowing one rider at a time and enforcing rider safety once the mechanical bull is turned on. Rider safety includes holding onto the rope using the non-dominant hand to maintain balance and knowing how to safely exit the ride area in the event of a fall.
Protect Customers With Safety Equipment and Padding
Protective equipment such as helmets and knee pads reduce the risk of serious injury when riding mechanical bulls. Owners must also provide padding under the bull to soften the blow from falls. Operators who opt for inflatable flooring should inspect it regularly to ensure it’s fully inflated.
Ensure Operators Have the Proper Training
Operators of the attraction should be trained in every element related to the mechanical bull. This includes inspecting the bull, identifying hazards, and operating the ride safely.
They also must adhere to the guidelines for rider safety; if a rider refuses to wear safety equipment, the operator should refuse to let the person ride. The operator must stop the mechanical bull if a rider behaves in a dangerous manner that could cause injury.
Obtain a Mechanical Bull Insurance Policy
Injuries are possible when operating mechanical bulls, even when running a relatively safe operation. Business owners with a mechanical bull insurance policy can better protect their financial interests if a customer becomes injured and files a claim.
Owners who don’t currently have insurance should start with a general liability policy. General liability protects businesses when a customer is injured or suffers property damage. For example, if a customer is thrown off the mechanical bull and hits their head when getting up, this may cause a traumatic brain injury requiring immediate and long-term medical care.
The general liability policy will cover medical bills and legal fees associated with the claim. Without this policy, the mechanical bull’s owner is exposed to catastrophic financial losses, making it impossible to maintain the business.
Some mechanical bull owners already have general liability policies in place. For instance, bar owners often add mechanical bulls in their establishments and assume their existing public liability policy will cover them.
However, if the mechanical bull wasn’t included in the original policy, there may be gaps in coverage that require umbrella mechanical bull insurance. Umbrella policies fill in the gaps and cover exclusions in the existing policy.
Start Your Mechanical Bull Insurance Coverage with Pro Insurance Group
Mechanical bull insurance is complicated due to the unique risks associated with this activity. Speaking with an insurance agent can ensure you obtain the appropriate coverage for your business. This can be a standalone insurance policy or umbrella coverage to eliminate holes in your existing policy.
The agents at Pro Insurance Group can review policies from multiple carriers, ensuring you find the best mechanical bull coverage. Contact Pro Insurance Group today for a quote based on your needs.