As parents, your number one priority is keeping your children safe, healthy, and happy, and you probably do this in all kinds of ways. You baby proof your home. You have strict rules about staying out after dark. You never let your children get on a bike without a helmet.
So then why do so many parents ignore safety where automobiles are concerned?
You may have seen the recent story about the car crash out of West Palm Beach. Eight people were injured, including four children. Two of the children were immediately rushed to the hospital for traumatic injuries.
When neighbors arrived to the scene, passengers in the car were heard yelling that one of the children was trapped underneath the car. The child had been ejected from the vehicle when it rolled over in the crash. Because they weren’t wearing a safety belt.
Do you make sure that your children wear seatbelts? Do you do it every single time they get in a car? Do you use the right booster or car seat for your child? Do you properly wear your seatbelt as well?
If you’re enforcing other rules to keep your child safe, but letting them slide when it comes to seat belts and booster seats, you may be ignoring the most important tool in your arsenal – and putting them at the highest amount of risk.
You don’t notice stories like the one from Palm Beach so often just because they stand out to you: auto accidents and traffic-related fatalities are the top cause of child fatalities in the country. A lack of proper restraint is a big reason why.
Stats on Children and Auto Accidents
In 2015, 938 children were killed in traffic-related crashes: 663 of these children were killed as the occupant of a passenger vehicle, 186 children were killed as pedestrians, and 29 children were killed while riding a bike. 2015 was the highest number of child passenger deaths since 2010.
1 in 4 unintentional injury child deaths are caused by motor vehicle crashes.
80% of children killed as a passenger were sitting in the rear seat.
32% of children were unrestrained.
From 2001 to 2010, around 20% of child passenger deaths were caused by a drunk driver.
Thankfully, even though auto accident fatalities in Florida are still on the rise, the rate of children who are killed in auto accidents has been declining since 1975. There is still much work to be done, though, and it starts with you, your children, and your behavior behind the wheel.
What You Can Do To Keep Your Kids Safe
Want to prevent your child from becoming a statistic? It’s simple: practice safe driving habits. Don’t drink and drive. Don’t speed or run traffic stops. Keep your eyes on the road, and don’t let your children (or anything, for that matter) distract you when you’re behind the wheel.
Set an example for your children. The best way to get them to buckle up in your car and other cars is to buckle up yourself. Seatbelts are not just for kids, and it’s not just for your safety. A whopping 40% of children who drove with unbelted drivers were also not wearing their seatbelts.
If your child is under the age of 13, they should be in a booster seat. If you are unsure about which booster or car seat is most appropriate for your child, do some research.
While we’re at it, here’s a reminder that not all child deaths in the car happen because of a crash. Never leave your child alone in a closed car. This is particularly important during the summer months when temperatures are at their highest, but even in cooler weather, cars can heat up incredibly fast.
Recognize That There Is Always Risk
The sad truth is that you can do everything “right” and still get in a car crash. Even the safest drivers cannot control the actions of negligent drivers, whether they are on the road with you or – worse – driving your child.
If your child is injured in a crash due to another’s negligence, you owe it to them to seek out compensation for medical, financial, and other related damages and to hold the responsible party accountable for their actions. Not only can this serve to help you and your family to recover during a trying time, it may also help to shine a spotlight on a serious issue and prevent another child from getting hurt in the same way.
About the Author:
Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 15-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney The Injury Law Firm of South Florida, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.
Here’s Why So Many Florida Kids Get Hurt in Bounce Houses
Kids love bounce houses. If they see one at a party, they go running. If the thought of this makes you want to start nervously biting your nails, don’t feel like a helicopter parent. Why? Because the reality is that bounce houses may be more dangerous than we think. Quick Stats about Bounce House Injuries [..]
Ways That a Florida Funeral Home Can Act Negligently
Losing a loved one is one of the most painful life experiences that we as humans endure. The bereaved often rely on the support of physicians, clergy members, and funeral home staff to make the process of losing a loved one easier. The majority of funeral homes operate responsibly, treating the deceased with dignity and [..]
Avoid Florida Car Crashes and Stay Safe with These Top Safety Features
Voice assist. Self-parking cars. Forward collision warnings. There are many possible safety features you can get for cars today, but not all of them are created equal. Some are incredibly useful and drastically reduce your chances of getting into an accident (or increase your chances of survival if you are in one), while others fall [..]
What You Need to Know about Florida Electrocution Injuries
If you are hurt by an electrical injury in Florida, you need to know why they happen and how negligence is to blame for many common injuries. In this post, we’re going to detail the most common injuries due to electrocution in Florida and how you can get help if negligence is involved. How Electrical [..]
A Florida Driver Hits You on Your Bike – What Do You Do Next?
Have you gotten injured in a bicycle accident caused by a driver? In this post, we’ll describe the do’s and don’ts after you experience this type of injury. After a Bicycle Accident – Do’s Follow these suggestions to protect your rights after a bicycle accident that involves a vehicle. File a Police Report Even if [..]
Hurt on Vacation in Florida? What to Do Next to Protect Yourself
Most seasoned travelers have at least one crazy story of a mishap or injury that occurred while traveling. Unfortunately, vacation injuries and illnesses are relatively common, and they are particularly difficult to deal with in an unfamiliar place. If you are injured on vacation, you may be forced to cancel the rest of your vacation, [..]
What Injured Passengers Should Do after a Florida Car Crash
If you are injured as a passenger in a Florida car crash, you need to understand how the law applies in our state so that you know how to proceed with a claim. We’ll explain what you need to do and how a personal injury attorney may be able to help. Passenger Injury Claims in [..]
Swimming Pool Injuries: The Many Ways Floridians Can Be Hurt
As the weather heats up, time in the pool becomes a necessity for many people. Nothing feels better than cooling off in a pool, whether you’re at your local swimming club or at a friend’s home. Unfortunately, swimming pools come with big risks, and Floridians should keep the potential for injury in mind before taking [..]
Injuries at Florida Summer Camps – How to Protect Your Kids and Family
Summer camp is a great way for children to enjoy time off from school and enjoy the outdoors. However, injuries do occur at summer camps and because of that you have to be careful about where you choose to go and protect yourself as much as possible. How? In this post, we’ll outline common injuries [..]
Well-Known Sports Fan Injuries – and How Floridians Can Fight Back
Last year, a young fan was seriously injured when struck by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium. What happened? A 2-year-old girl was sitting on her grandfather’s lap while attending a game. She was struck in the eye by a 105-mile-per-hour fastball, which spun off the bat of Todd Frazier. The little girl spent more [..]
When Might a Bar Be Liable for Over-serving Alcohol?
Bars and advertisements for alcoholic products often encourage people to “drink responsibly,” but in some cases, the establishments or bartenders serving these drinks may be at least partially liable for a patron’s alcohol-related injury or death. Under certain circumstances, bars can—and should—be held responsible for over-serving patrons. Many states have “dram shop” laws (named [..]
The death of a loved one is traumatic and devastating experience— regardless of the cause. However, the ordeal can be especially upsetting if the death could have been avoided had it not been for the negligent actions of another. In Florida, surviving family members and loved ones may be able to recover compensation for [..]
What Happens If My Child Is Injured at Summer Camp?
School is out, but that doesn’t mean your child has to be stuck at home for the summer with no structure and nothing to do. Summer camps are a great way to keep your child active, supervised, and having fun – while also allowing them to branch out. However, summer camps come with a lot [..]
Summertime is quickly approaching, which means barbecues, family vacations, and a lot of days sitting by the pool. While you and your loved ones enjoy the hot summer weather and cool water, it is important to keep yourself safe. In this post we will be focusing on swimming pool injuries and how to prevent them. [..]
Hoverboards were called the hottest holiday gift last year – and just not because they were so popular. These motorized platforms, often compared to a portable Segway or balancing scooter, gained rapid attention on social media for their popularity with celebrities and futuristic capabilities. However, the amount of injuries and disasters caused by [..]
Pizza Companies Should Take Responsibility for Delivery Driver Tragedies
Image:http://pixabay.com/en/pizza-service-order-pizza-pizza-43368/ It’s a Dangerous World for Pizza Delivery Drivers Pizza can be dangerous. No, we’re not talking about the fat content or the artery-clogging cholesterol. We’re talking about the surprising number of accidents and injuries surrounding pizza delivery. In fact, according to PizzaMarketplace.com, in 2003, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ranked pizza [..]
Image: http://pixabay.com/en/dog-man-attacking-canine-training-78117/ When Pets Attack, They Can Cause Serious or Even Fatal Injuries Most people like dogs. How can you resist those adoring eyes, the wagging tail, and the warm, fuzzy head that seems to appear in your lap just when you’re feeling your lowest? So many Americans like dogs, in fact, that [..]
Florida is known for its beautiful waterways, which are excellent for boating. Unfortunately, boating accidents are common and happen for many different reasons. Below, we’re going to cover the most common reasons for boating accidents and tell you how boating negligence cases work if you are injured. Why Florida Boating Accidents Happen Here are the [..]
Can You Sue in Florida after a Tire Blowout Injury?
The recent death of a Tampa couple is an example of what might have been a potential product liability lawsuit had they lived. On Thanksgiving Day, Kevin and Michelle Livingston were traveling home from a visit to south Florida. Reports indicate that their sport utility vehicle drove into the waters of a canal along [..]
Types of Negligent Behavior Florida Pharmacists Can Engage In
When you receive prescription medication, you should be able to trust that it is correct and medically beneficial to you. A pharmacist has the responsibility to make sure your prescription is correct. If negligence occurs, you could have serious or life-threatening injuries. If you believe you may have been harmed by a pharmacist’s negligence in [..]
The Injury Law Firm of South Florida handles cases throughout Florida from their Fort Lauderdale office. Here is a list of some of the counties and cities we serve:
Breeze Park, Jensen Beach, Jupiter, Sewall’s, Stuart Point Ocean.
St. Lucie County
Fort Pierce, Port St Lucie.
Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Estero, East Dunbar, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel.
Palm Beach County
Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, West Palm Beach, and throughout the greater Palm Beach area.
Coral Springs, Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale, Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, Pembroke Pines, Pompano Beach, Margate, Miramar, North Lauderdale, Plantation, Sunrise, Tamarac, Weston, and throughout the greater Broward area.
Aventura, Coral Gables, Hialeah, Kendall, Miami, Miami Beach, North Miami, South Miami, Beach, Sunny Isles, and throughout the greater Miami-Dade area.