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Ask ‘what ifs’ before going to Westwood

Published: Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013 1:15 a.m. CDT

Regarding New Year’s resolutions, if yours is exercise, you may want to ask about the “what ifs.”

What if I should, unfortunately, get hurt?

If the machine should break and I get hurt, who’ll be responsible for medical bills?

Did you know the Westwood Sports Complex doesn’t pay for any medical bills incurred by a piece of equipment  breaking while being used? I was appalled recently when a friend got on a piece of equipment and it broke. She was left dangling, and when she reported it, an “out of order” sign was placed on it because maintenance couldn’t get it repaired. Her back was thrown out and shoulder left sore.

An accident report was taken, but when it came time to a claim to just pay for chiropractor visits, she was told it was her responsibility; they were the park district and only self insured. They said that the park district is immune within the state of Illinois, unless proved negligent.

Why fill out an accident report? She was not asking for anything other than her chiropractor visits to be paid. She was fortunate enough to not have to miss work, but had much evening discomfort from having to continue to work.

So, if you’re looking around for some exercise, you may want to ask the questions. Better yet, what if you are just playing basketball, walking the track, or doing anything in a park district facility? Swimming at the Duis Center? Be prepared to foot the bill if anything unfortunate happens. Your annual or monthly fees aren’t going to help pay insurance premiums.

I think the public should be aware of this. It’s a great facility for the community but – what if? Do you have the money for an unfortunate additional expense? I thought all businesses were required to have insurance. A franchise exercise facility has to.

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