Every year in October the spooks and ghouls come out to scare us in a variety of ways. Many people spend their hard earned time and money to go to different attractions and be terrified whether it be a haunted house, hayride, or cornfield maze. To those going through we see nothing but the undead ready to pop out and scare the living daylights out of us. We tend to forget that these are real people of all ages and genders.
Professionals in the haunted house industry say it is very common for patrons to get scared and have a natural reaction to throw a punch, kick, or elbow. Some people have even been known to bite the actors.
According to one professional the most common injury that he sees an actor receive is a busted nose. Someone either throws a punch or swings their elbow when scared from behind.
There are also some common industry injuries; “haunted house throat” is caused from excessive screaming that leaves the throat sore and raw. Another injury frequently seen is “clever elbow” which is caused from the repetitive swinging motion, this injury is similar to that of tennis elbow. That terrifying zombie with the chainsaw chasing you may end up with muscle burn from the vibration of the chainsaw.
Owners of haunted houses see injury as a risk associated with the sport of being an actor in a situation like a haunted attraction. Apparently some of the actors are just as terrified of what the patrons may do as much as they are trying to scare the patrons. There have been people who have brought tasers, people have tried to set the actors on fire.
Erica Holloway worked as a haunted house employee with taking singing lessons in Flint, MI. She said that she would have to scream at the top of her lungs over 30 times a night, as a result her range actually improved so working at the haunted house benefited her.
So does working in a hunted house and getting injured entitle you to workers compensation should you end up with a busted nose or a twisted ankle. The answer is most likely no – because most of the employees are independent contractors or volunteers there is no standard workers compensation policy. So this Halloween season when you are going for the terrifying thrill lets try to remember that even though they are out there to scare us, they are still people who need to get home at the end of the night. Let’s not send them home a bloody mess.
Source: Huffington Post