How to Protect Children from Car Crash Injuries
When car manufacturers design safety features for automobiles, they do so primarily with the safety of adults in mind. Therefore, if you are driving a child in a vehicle, other precautions need to be taken to prevent serious injuries if a car accident occurs while you are on the road. If you believe that one of the safety precautions designed to help your child stay safe from a crash injury did not work as promised, you may want to look into calling an experienced car accident lawyer at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. and booking a free consultation.
Car accident statistics
Recent CDC data provides more clarity into how pervasive children’s car accident injuries can be. In the United States in 2016, 723 children under the age of 12 died in motor vehicle crashes, and over 128,000 children were injured that year in car crashes as well.
Of the children under 12 who passed away due to injuries sustained in car accidents, 35% of them were not wearing seat belts at the time of the accident.
Another CDC study found that in a single year, over 618,000 children under 12 rode in motor vehicles without a seat belt, a booster seat, or a child safety seat at least some of the time.
Common injuries children suffer in car accidents
Although each auto accident is different and can cause various injuries depending on the speed of the cars, the way they hit each other or another obstacle, and other factors, there are still many common injuries suffered by children in car accidents.
These injuries can include brain or head trauma, lung injuries, fractured or broken bones, lacerations and cuts from a broken window or windshield glass, dental injuries, whiplash, and psychological trauma.
Car seat laws
It is important to know the laws surrounding the mandatory use of childrens’ car seats in your state (or in any state through which you will be driving children). In Michigan, children younger than four years of age are required to ride in a car seat in the rear of the car if the vehicle being driven has a rear seat. The only time a child under four may ride in the front seat is if all available rear seats are taken up by children under four in car seats, and the child in the front still must be in a car seat with the airbag turned off.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that any child under the age of two should ride in a rear-facing car seat as well.
Until a child is eight years old or 4’9” tall, they must ride properly buckled in a booster seat or car seat. Children must ride in one of these seats until they reach the height requirement or the age requirement, whichever happens to them first.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends a policy of putting children under 13 years of age in the back seat of the car if at all possible.
For older children and even adults, using a seat belt can reduce the risk of death and serious injury in a car crash by about half, according to CDC data.
If your child has been injured in a car accident that was not your fault, regardless of the safety methods used to secure the child in the vehicle, contact an experienced attorney at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P. C. at 1-866-MICH-LAW (1-866-642-4529) to schedule a no obligation consultation and look into getting the compensation and justice that your child deserves.