WHAM-O Backyard Water Slides Are Dangerous For Adults And Teenagers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:

MAY 27, 1993

(301) 504-7908

Release # 93-076

 

WHAM-O Backyard Water Slides Are Dangerous For Adults And Teenagers

PRODUCT: Approximately 9 million WHAM-O backyard water slides, manufactured by Kransco and WHAM-O. The water slides were sold nationwide from 1961 through February 1992 under the following names: Slip 'N Slide, Super Slip 'N Slide, Slip 'N Splash, White Water Rapids, Fast Track Racers, and Wet Banana.

PROBLEM: The WHAM-O slides are designed for use by children only. Use by adults and teens has the potential to result in neck injury and paralysis. Because of their weight and height, adults and teenagers who dive onto the water slide may hit and abruptly stop in such a way that could cause permanent spinal cord injury, resulting in quadriplegia or paraplegia. The slider's forward momentum drives the body into the neck and compresses the spinal cord. Kransco reports that seven adults and a 13-year-old teenager suffered neck injuries or paralysis while using WHAM-O slides.

WHAT TO DO: The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Kransco urge adults and teenagers NOT to use WHAM-O backyard slides. Read the warnings and instructions on the box and the toy itself which state that the product is NOT FOR ADULT USE. Adults should instruct children how to use the slide safely. Consumers who have questions about this warning should call Kransco at 1-800-334-5775.

WASHINGTON, DC -- Kransco Group Companies and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warn consumers that WHAM-O backyard water slides, manufactured by Kransco and WHAM-O for years as popular summertime toys for children, should NOT be used by adults or teenagers. The toys were designed for use by children only. Use by adults and teens has the potential to result in neck injury and paralysis.

Because of their weight and height, adults and teenagers who dive onto the water slide may hit and abruptly stop in such a way that could cause permanent spinal cord injury, resulting in quadriplegia or paraplegia. The slider's forward momentum drives the body into the neck and compresses the spinal cord.

Kransco reports that seven adults who used WHAM-O slides suffered neck injuries, quadriplegia, or paraplegia. A 13-year- old teenager suffered a fractured neck while using a WHAM-O slide. The incidents occurred between 1973 and 1991.

According to Kransco, 9 million WHAM-O water slides called Slip 'N Slide, Super Slip 'N Slide, Slip 'N Splash, White Water Rapids, Fast Track Racers, and Wet Banana were sold nationwide from 1961 to February 1992. The slides are long plastic sheets with stakes to secure the sheet to a flat lawn free of rocks, mounds, and depressions. Some slides included an inflatable raft to slide on the plastic sheet; others may have an inflatable pool at the end of the slide.

CPSC and Kransco urge adults and teenagers NOT to use the WHAM-O backyard slides. Consumers should read the warnings and instructions on the box and on the toy itself which state that the product is NOT intended for adult use. Adults should instruct children how to use the slides safely.

Consumers who have questions about this warning should call Kransco at 1-800-334-5775.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is issuing this warning as a part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The Commission's objective is to reduce the estimated 28.6 million injuries and 21,700 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jurisdiction.