Wind Blows Away Bounce Houses With Kids Inside

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A big wind gust blows away inflatable bounce houses with children inside. (Published Monday, Jun 6, 2011)

    Parents and kids at a Long Island soccer club got a scare Saturday when a big wind gust blew away three inflatable bounce houses with children inside.

    When the bouncers landed, from about a dozen feet up, several people on the ground at the Oceanside party were knocked over.

    Lara Rhatigan described what happened when the bounce house was suddenly blown into the sky: "A rope caught my neck and dragged me."

    Her younger sister Nina said the house fell on her, and she hurt her nose and knee.

    Shortly after the accident, workers quickly deflated the ride and rolled it up. But the unlikely image of three large balloon houses flying in the air stayed on the minds of the baffled and shaken-up parents.

    "It was the craziest thing I've ever seen," said one.

    "I tried to grab it and it flattened me," said another parent.

    In April, a similar accident in Rockland County bruised four young girls between ages two and six when their Passover celebration bounce house also was lifted in the air by a gust of wind. All were okay, but the two-year-old was knocked unconscious for a time.

    A total of 13 people were taken to area hospitals after the mishap. The Oceanside United Soccer Club was hosting a tournament, setting up the bounce houses  for entertainment.

    Authorities said most of injuries were minor. Police said the bounce houses were weighted down with sand bags, and it was just a terrible accident. They do not expect to file any charges in the case.