How Can I Protect My Child from Serious Injury in a Car Accident?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death in children. Even worse, a significant number of these accidents can be prevented. In 2018 alone, 636 children (12 years and younger) passed away from a motor vehicle crash. In addition, 97,000 of these children suffered some type of injury.
There is nothing worse for any family than seeing their child hurt, especially in a car accident that can ultimately impact the rest of their lives. In this blog, we want to address some of these concerns. Specifically, discussing the injuries that children can experience following a car accident, the actions you can take to protect your child from these devastating injuries, and how a Las Vegas personal injury attorney can fight for the damages your child deserves following a life-changing car crash.
Because a child’s body and brain are still developing, when a child is involved in a motor vehicle accident, the injuries that result can lead to emotional and developmental challenges that can last the rest of their lives. Even though these injuries can differ based on the circumstances of the crash, some of the most common car accident injuries include:
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Spinal Cord Damage
- Deep Lacerations
- Broken or Fractured Bones
- Neck and Back Damages
- Facial Injuries
- Chest Injuries
- Depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Many times people may not even realize the significant impact that these injuries can have on a child. For instance, even a minor car crash can lead to a lifetime of damages. When a young child is out of school because of a car accident injury, it is not only their physical harm that can result in them suffering. This isolation from their friends and peers can often affect their social development, cognitive functions, and even their motor skills.
How To Ensure Your Child Is Safe in the Car
Unfortunately, not every accident can be avoided. However, a parent can take actions to help ensure that their child stays safe even if the car they are riding in is involved in a motor vehicle accident. Most research indicates that child restraints are one of the best ways to prevent a child from suffering a severe injury following a car accident.
According to the CDC, situating and buckling your child in age and size appropriate booster seats, car seats, and even seat belts can help reduce the risk of serious and fatal injuries. Consider the following statistics:
- A car seat can reduce the risk of injury in a car crash by up to 82% for children, compared to seat belt use alone.
- When a booster seat is used, the risk of serious injury for children aged four to eight is reduced by 45% compared to seat belt use alone.
- For older children, seat belt use is known to reduce the risk of a devastating injury or death by almost half.
Know The Different Stages of Car Safety
One of the best things you can do to keep your child safe is to understand the different stages of when your child needs to be in a car seat, a booster seat, or use a seat belt.
- Rear-Facing Car Seat: This rear-facing car seat stage occurs from birth until age two to four. To maximize safety, infants and toddlers should be in a rear-facing car seat until they reach the height limit or the upper weight limit of their seat.
- Forward-Facing Car Seat: This next stage occurs when the child outgrows their rear-facing seat and usually lasts until the child reaches the age of 5. When using this forward-facing car seat, the child needs to be buckled up, facing forward, in the back seat. They will be in this position until they reach the upper height or weight limit allowed for the seat.
- Booster Seats: Once the child is too big for their forward-facing seat, they will transition into a booster seat until the seat belt can fit around them properly. In this booster seat stage, the child will be buckled in a belt-positioning booster seat until they are able to sit in the car with the seat belt fitting them as it should. This proper seat belt fit usually happens when a child is 4 feet 9 inches tall and between the ages of nine and 12 years old.
- Seat Belt: A child will no longer need a booster seat when a seat lap belt can lay across their upper thighs, and the shoulder belt can lay across their chest. For best protection, it is recommended that the child remain buckled in the back seat.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Provide You The Help You Need
If your child is involved in a car accident and has suffered a serious injury, you need legal help that you can trust. This time can be extremely difficult and overwhelming for not only you and your child but also for your whole family. The last thing on your mind should be how to take care of a personal injury legal claim following a horrific car accident.
Fortunately, with the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer, you will not have to tackle these complicated legal proceedings on your own. These lawyers have the skills and the knowledge to:
- Go over your case in detail and answer any questions or concerns you may have
- Begin investigating the accident and gathering critical evidence needed to substantiate your claims
- Handle all the discussions and negotiations with the insurance company
- Fight for the damages your child deserves
That is why do not wait any longer. Contact an experienced and skilled personal injury lawyer today or call our office at 702-680-1111. You have been through a lot. It is time for you and your child to start focusing on recovery while you let these lawyers go after the justice you want for your child.