Florida car accidents are one of the leading causes of injuries and fatalities for young children. While children do not drive, they spend comparable time in cars when compared with adults, simply because children are always being driven to school, to appointments, for visits to friends and family, and to other events. Long hours on the road mean an increased risk of accidents.
Children are more vulnerable to car accident injuries because they bodies are small and developing. A Florida brain injury sustained by an adult, for example, can heal more quickly than one sustained by a child, where the brain is smaller and still growing. Small bones can break more easily and since children have not developed a stronger immune system, they may be more prone to complications after an injury.
Children are also more vulnerable in a car accident because many of the safety devices in cars are designed for adults. Seat belts and airbags are designed for adult passengers and can in fact be dangerous for a child. Air bags, when they deflate, tend to hit an adult passenger in the chest, reducing the possible impact against a dashboard. With a child, however, the airbag is likely to push violently against the face, which can cause severe head injuries and can prevent the child from breathing normally. Seat belts, too, can cut into a child’s neck during an accident, since the seat belt is designed for an adult.
Childhood injuries in a car accident are more likely to happen if children do not use child-appropriate safety restraints. The safest place for a child is in the rear seat, in an age-appropriate child restraint. That means a child seat for infants and a booster seat for older children. Of course, it is imperative that these devices be used every time the child is in a car. Placing a child in an age-appropriate child restraint can also help prevent an accident, as it ensures that the child is restrained and is unable to cause a distraction in the car by getting into trouble while the car is moving.
Of course, it is important for all parents to drive carefully to prevent a Florida car accident. There is no point in putting a “baby on board” or “child on board” sign on a car if the driver does not take care to drive carefully as well. Putting away distractions, leaving ample room in front of you, and obeying traffic laws is imperative in keep you – and your child – safe.
Another way to protect your children is to be careful about who drives your children around. Most parents feel comfortable driving their child around, since they know that they will take the necessary precautions. However, it is also important to consider child safety when allowing your child in the car with a relative, friend, baby sitter, or day car provider. Ensure that everyone who drives your child has age-appropriate child restraints and uses them correctly. Ensure that driving safety records are good before allowing someone to drive your child to school or an appointment.
If your child has been injured in a Florida car accident, contact the compassionate and professional legal team at the Flaxman Law Group to arrange for a free consultation. The legal team at the Flaxman Law Group has helped thousands of South Florida car accident and personal injury victims from law offices in Miami, Homestead, and Hollywood.