A nine year old girl was left with multiple fractures to her face when a Little Tikes slide tipped over on top of her because her father had been given the wrong instructions to secure it into the ground.
On 20 May 2017, Izzy Lawton from Stoke-on-Trent, was playing on the slide with her three-year-old brother Alex when she saw it starting to topple over. While quick-thinking Izzy managed to push him out of the way to safety, she took the full force of the slide on her face, which resulted in seven fractures.
The Little Tikes Warsaw Wooden Wavy Slide had been assembled correctly by Izzy’s father, Leigh, who had exactly followed the instructions inside the box that said secure the slide into the grass with metal spikes.
It later transpired, however, that the slide had been sold to the family with the wrong set of instructions and it should actually have been set in concrete.
Manchester-based personal injury law firm, Express Solicitors, is supporting Izzy’s parents in bringing a claim against Little Tikes for the trauma and pain Izzy has suffered. Only a week after the accident, Izzy had to undergo an operation to put the bones in her face back into place.
Izzy’s father Leigh explains, “The instructions that came with slide told me to anchor the slide to the grass with metal spikes, which I did. However, after the accident we were told that the slide should have been set in concrete and left to dry for 48 hours… we had been given the wrong ones.
“Izzy’s accident was extremely traumatic; there was a lot of screaming and blood, but thankfully an ambulance came straight away. This meant she was very quickly given x-rays and CT scans, and thoroughly checked over to ensure there was no brain injury or bleeding on the brain. The specialists said the slide must have hit her with some force because children have soft bones and they normally wouldn’t have broken. In fact, we were told they had only seen this type of injury once before and that had been from a car accident.
“It wasn’t until the swelling went down, that we were told Izzy had three major and four minor fractures around her eye socket and down the side of her nose. A week later, she underwent a complex operation where surgeons went through her mouth to push all her bones back into place. Although she is healing, she won’t be discharged from the hospital until she’s an adult as the specialist must check her progress as she grows. Just one of the things that affects her is that she can’t wear her glasses as they hurt her nose too much, which makes schoolwork and homework a challenge.
“The accident has been really distressing for the rest of the family, in fact, when it happened, her little brother went into shock. As the person who put up the slide, I was also devastated, but I followed the instructions correctly and if I’d been told to fix the slide into concrete, I would have done that, it would have been easy.”
Leanne Rowley, partner at Express Solicitors, said: “We’re working with Izzy’s family to bring a claim against Little Tikes. The top and bottom of it is that all of this pain, stress and trauma could have been avoided if the right instructions been inside the box.”