The month of September is full of events devoted to infant and child safety. The American Society for the Positive Care of Children (also known as the American SPCC) sponsors National Childhood Injury Prevention Week in September, while the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration observes Child Passenger Safety Week. September is designated as National Baby Safety Month to educate people about accidental injuries to infants and how to prevent them.
Statistics show these awareness campaigns are much-needed: the American SPCC notes that accidents are the number-one cause of death for children and teens under the age of 20. According to the CDC, more than 3,000 children 15 and younger die each year from unintentional injuries. While activism devoted to preventing gun deaths among children tends to get more media attention, statistics show by far the most dangerous “weapon” to children is the family car, usually with a parent behind the wheel: the leading cause of fatal child injury is car accidents, causing 40 percent of all accidental deaths. The second leading cause is drowning, at 20 percent. While less common, fires, suffocation, and pedestrian accidents nonetheless kill hundreds of children each year.
Tips for Preventing Child Injuries
While serious injuries to a child are every parent’s worst nightmare, the good news is that they are, as the American SPCC says, “predictable and preventable.” For instance, here are ten easy tips to prevent the most common types of accidents:
- Always make sure your child rides in the proper type of car seat or booster seat for their age and weight, and make sure these seats are properly secured.
- Avoid driving dangers like speeding, texting while driving, and driving under the influence of alcohol or other substances. Safe driving is always important, but it is especially important when children are in the car.
- Do not leave children unattended in the bathtub, even for a few minutes. If you own a pool, it should always be secured with a child-proof gate or fence. Never allow children to swim alone.
- Don’t place hot items—like a pot of boiling water—where children can reach them.
- Keep prescription drugs, cleaning products, and other potentially poisonous substances secured and out of reach of children.
- Teach children the basics of pedestrian and roadway safety, such as looking left, right, and left again when crossing the street. They should always wear a bike helmet while biking.
- Keep choking hazards, like hard candy and toys with small parts, away from young children.
- Before your infant begins to crawl, “baby-proof” your home by covering electrical outlets and putting up baby gates.
- When playing sports, make sure your child is wearing the recommended safety equipment, such as helmets or kneepads.
- Teach children how to dial 911 in case of an emergency.
During National Childhood Injury Prevention Week, the American SPCC seeks to remind parents and caregivers that the power to prevent accidents in largely in their hands.
“The most common place for children to get hurt is in the home,” the group says. “The impact of these injuries can have life-long effects on the child and their family.”
However, sometimes a child is injured due to the negligence of a third party. If your child suffers an injury because of the actions of a careless adult, you may have the right to take legal action against this person. A Cleveland child injury lawyer could help you do so while protecting the rights and interests of your child. A dedicated personal injury attorney could assist you in seeking compensation to help meet future needs, past expenses, and provide a sense of justice.
Reach Out to Tittle & Perlmuter for Help
If the reckless or careless behavior of an adult caused injury to your child, contact the lawyers at Tittle & Perlmuter. We will provide you with a free consultation to determine whether we are the right lawyers for your case.