Childhood Injuries

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Injury Representation in Bainbridge, Georgia

It is hard to imagine a more emotional event than when a child is killed or injured. Literally, it is every parent’s worst nightmare come true. Sadly, many childhood deaths and injuries are preventable. We trust product manufacturers, schools, teachers, daycare centers, playgrounds, apartment complexes, doctors, hospitals, and many others, in order to help us to prevent harm from coming to our kids. However, the plain fact is that we live in a very dangerous world and there is much more that can be done in order to protect our children.

In 2008, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) published its long term study entitled a “Childhood Injury Report: Patterns of Unintentional Injuries among 0-19 Year Olds in the United States, 2000-2006”. Some of the many notable findings that came out of that previous study were: “On average, 12,175 children 0 to 19 years of age died each year in the U.S. from an Unintentional injury. According to the CDC, “unintentional injuries are predictable and preventable when proper safety precautions are taken – they are not “accidents”.  Now, as of 2015, in the data from 8 years since, the CDC states that “More than 9,000 children die each year (equivalent to 150 school busses all loaded with children each year). So, the statistics are improving, but still “about 20 children die every day from a preventable injury – more than die from all diseases combined.”

In its solution oriented recommendations from its data, the CDC now writes that another approach to injury prevention is a focus on the “Three E’s” : education, enforcement, and engineering. The most effective injury prevention efforts use a combination of these strategies:

  • Education is the foundation of much of public health. It can inform the public about potential risks and safety options and help people behave safely. An example would be teaching expectant parents how to properly use a child safety seat when transporting their newborn.
  • Enforcement uses the legal system to influence behavior and the environment and can be very effective in preventing injuries, especially when combined with education. Examples include laws and ordinances requiring the use of child safety seats and bicycle helmets and enforcement of speeding limits and healthy housing codes. Adequately enforcing laws, ordinances, and regulations increases their effectiveness.
  • Engineering uses environmental and product design strategies to reduce the chance of an injury event or to reduce the amount of energy to which someone is exposed. The best engineering solutions are passive: those that do not require any effort from the person being protected. Examples include flame-resistant sleepwear for children, safety surfacing on playgrounds, and toys without small parts. Other technological solutions require repeated action by the user, for example, installing a child safety seat, using booster seats, and installing and maintaining a working smoke alarm.”

An important part of that “legal system” that the CDC mentions is the civil justice system that allows you and your child to make claims against others. In addition to compensating injured children and their families, the legal system can punish and deter wrongdoers and make others sit up and take notice of the fact that we must protect children from harm, to the maximum extent possible. Whether it is a faulty product that gets made safer or a company that is made to pay for damages, when it functions correctly, the civil justice system can make the world a safer for other children as well as to provide for the future needs of injured children and their families.

Let Us Help You and Your Family

Keeping in line with the CDC’s First “E”, which is education, one practical “every day” resource for preventing childhood injury is the book 365 Ways to Keep Kids Safe, written by legendary attorney and children’s rights advocate Don Keenan:

(Click picture or HERE to view)

I was fortunate to receive an early copy, while my son was very young and can say it helped me to identify many hazards over the years, so much so that I have since given it as a gift to expecting couples. It is a great library reference as well and not something that you read once and then give it away. Children take on new interests and activities as they age and grow older and the associated risks and dangers for them are constantly changing as well. Awareness of the possible hazards, as well as educating ourselves and our children on how to avoid and prevent them is obviously extremely important. While parents should educate themselves about hazards, sometimes that is not enough. Sometimes the actions of others can harm our kids and cause immeasurable loss, grief, and sadness. Sometimes there are unforeseen immediate medical expenses or the necessity of future surgery, once the child is older or becomes an adult. Every family’s loss is different and unique. We are here to help you to get through those challenging and difficult times.

It is important to act quickly in the event of childhood injury, in order to preserve whatever evidence there might be, as well as to establish the facts of causation. Many times I have seen other parents, or even other attorneys, to delay the gathering of medical records, investigating, and the filing of any necessary lawsuit, so much so that some legal rights to compensation were lost forever and can’t ever be gotten back. Children and the parents of injured children each have different legal rights to different types of compensation.

People hear that a child’s legal rights to recover money in a civil lawsuits are preserved until the child is age 18, plus two years. While that is partially true, the parents only have 2 years to claim medical expenses – until the child is age 18, as well as loss of services. These years can be (typically are) the bulk of the expenses. While two years may seem like a long time, I can promise you that it is not. Trying to gather a massive amount of information (all or most of it), years past the event, is very difficult and time consuming. At the very least, you should have all of your questions answered, as soon as possible.

I am proud of my record in representing childhood injury victims and their families. I am individually devoted to my client’s cases and I care, individually, about them and their families. There is no fee for us to talk and I will be glad to answer your questions. Feel Free to call our office at your convenience.

Contact us at (229) 299-8200 to arrange a Free consultation.
When results matter, choose Mark F. Milhollin, P.C..