Many parents do not want to consider the possibility of accidents or injuries befalling their children. Nevertheless, numerous daily incidents do lead to scrapes, cuts, and bruises. Then there are mishaps that cause bigger and more lasting injuries, such as car accidents.
In the United States, car accidents are the leading cause of death in children between the ages of three and fourteen. Parents and caretakers may not be able to prevent every car accident, but there are important safety standards that parents can follow to keep their kids safer.
Buckle Up Is More Than the Law
The best protection for your child when riding in a car, truck, or SUV is a physical restraint. Car seats save more pre-adolescent lives than any other factor. Given that car accidents are the leading cause of death for children ages three to 14, finding the right car seat is essential to safety.
While many expensive options exist, the best car seat for your child’s safety is going to fulfill two main objectives. First, the seat will buckle properly into your vehicle, whether it uses a seat belt or the LATCH systems included in newer model cars. Second, the straps on the car seat will fit snuggly around your child.
Most car accidents involving children happen close to home. Many caretakers forget this essential fact when putting kids in the car to run a quick errand or drop an older child off at school. It may seem like an insignificant decision to leave the car seat unbuckled or not carefully secure straps around your child. However, accidents are most prone to happen during these day-to-day errands.
Situate Your Children in the Back Seat
Second to using a good car seat, where you buckle in your babies is important. Young children should never sit in the front seat. Accident statistics show that children who are seated up front, even in car seats, are more likely to sustain injuries in head-on or side collisions. Moreover, the same airbags that provide huge protection for the driver and adult passengers can harm small children.
Instead, place your children’s car seats in the second row of seats. Simply by moving your kids to the middle or back seat, you can cut the possibility of serious injury in half.
Do Not Hesitate to Seek Medical Attention
Children are particularly fragile and at risk of injury in the event of a car accident. The force and trauma involved in a collision can result in more serious injuries to their smaller bodies, and it can be more difficult for children to discuss pain or injury. Many children hurt their heads, chests, and lungs in auto accidents; exactly where or how these parts of the body hurt can be tough for a child to describe. Therefore, caretakers and other adults should be proactive about seeking medical attention for children involved in an accident.
If an injury is suspected or likely, do not hesitate to call for emergency medical care, see a pediatrician, or make follow-up appointments with a specialist.
Receiving Insurance Benefits and Legal Counsel
While we hope today’s safe and secure car seats prevent any injury to young children in the event of an accident, you want to know your options if injuries do occur. Specific insurance plans cover passengers involved in a motor vehicle accident, including children. Typically, the bodily injury insurance of the at-fault driver will be required to cover a child’s medical expenses. However, if you carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, it may also cover injury costs for your children.
If an insurance company refuses or balks at a request to cover children’s medical expenses, legal options are available to you. Florida allows guardians to bring actions on behalf of minor children as guardian ad litem.
Consulting With a Child Car Accident Injury Attorney
After an accident, you will have questions regarding insurance coverage, recovery of children’s medical costs, or the appropriate process for bringing a personal injury claim as a guardian ad litem. A child car accident injury attorney in Florida can answer these questions.
Our Miami car accident law firm has represented drivers and families after motor vehicle accidents that involved young children. We understand the law in Florida specific to these personal injury cases, and we also understand the trauma and stress these situations may cause families. To speak with a knowledgeable Florida car accident attorney, call Aronfeld Trial Lawyers toll-free at 1-866-597-4529, locally at (305)-441-0440, or reach us by email at [email protected] or via SKYPE.