Category: Child Safety

Playground Injuries, Supervision Negligence and Failure to Witness Injuries: Who’s Responsible?

Children of all ages enjoy playing on playgrounds, and parents have a reasonable expectation that kids will be safe when doing so. Part of these safety expectations involve ensuring that children are properly supervised during playtime. One of the questions that’s frequently asked involves whether or not a failure to witness an accident constitutes negligence. The answer largely depends on whether that supervision would have been reasonable under the circumstances.

Duty of Care

Childcare providers have a duty to provide reasonable supervision for kids when they are playing outdoors. As a part of this supervision, individuals should ensure that there is an adequate adult-to-child ratio so that watching kids on a playground will not be too overwhelming. As such, caregivers who manage too many children at one time could be liable for damages. A few other instances in which negligence may occur include:

  • Child care workers who are distracted or not paying attention
  • Allowing children to engage in activities that are not age appropriate
  • Older children being permitted to play with younger children whenever doing so would be unsafe

Reasonable Person Standard

In determining negligence, courts typically use what is known as a “reasonable person” standard. In doing so, they will try to determine what a reasonable person would have done under the same circumstances, and then look at the actions of the accused. If it appears an individual did not take reasonable precautions, he or she could then be viewed as negligent, and subsequently be liable for any damages that occur. As such, the decision as to whether or not a caregiver was negligent by failing to witness an accident will largely depend on whether he or she could have reasonably been expected to do so.

Types of Possible Playground Injuries

Some playground injuries, such as scrapes and cuts, are relatively minor ones that are expected for this type of activity. Others should never happen, such as is the case with:

  • Traumatic head injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Back injuries
  • Serious lacerations

Legal Actions to Take after an Accident

After a playground accident that is unwitnessed, every effort should be made to determine the cause of it as soon as possible. This should be done not only to determine negligence, but also to prevent other children from sustaining a similar accident in the future. Only after a reasonable investigation has been done will parents of injured children know whether they have a remedy available to them under law.

If your child has been injured on playground equipment, then it’s important you contact a professional legal representative. Schedule a free case evaluation and call 713-222-1222 today.

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Child Poisoning – Signs Your Kid Has Been Poisoned

The number of harmful substances a child can get into in a home is nearly limitless. Add to this the fact that children are naturally curious, and it’s easy to see why half of all poisoning cases in the United States involves patients who are six years of age or younger. It’s important for parents to know what the signs of poisoning are so that treatment can be given right away. A few common signs of poisoning are:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Convulsions
  • Chemical burns on the face, lips or mouth
  • Severe throat pain
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting and stomach pain
  • Extreme drowsiness

In addition to these symptoms, a child may exhibit a foul or unusual odor after coming into contact with harmful chemicals. There could also be a chemical residue found on a child’s clothing. In some cases, parents discover poisoning has occurred after finding a container out of place or one with spilled contents.

Actions after Poisoning

If poisoning is suspected, help should be sought immediately, even if the symptoms appear to be relatively minor. That’s because a child’s condition can quickly change, and the sooner help is sought, the better the odds of recovery are. The first step should be to call the Poison Control Center at 800.222.1222 and provide as much information as possible. Some of the things the Poison Control Center may need to know include:

  • What was swallowed or ingested
  • Approximate amounts taken
  • When the poisoning occurred
  • Age, gender and weight of the child

Visiting the Emergency Room

Staff members at the Poison Control Center will sometimes recommend visiting an emergency room for treatment. When taking a child to an emergency room, it can be helpful to take the substance that was swallowed along, as this may help with determining what treatments to give. Parents should not try to determine on their own what toxin is responsible, as this could result in the wrong treatment being given.

When Negligence is Suspected

Childhood poisoning sometimes happens whenever other people are negligent in storing hazardous substances. Day care centers, preschools and child enrichment programs must all take reasonable precautions to keep children from accessing cleaning supplies or other chemicals, and could be held liable for damages if they fail to do so. Parents of children who are poisoning victims should try to determine the cause of it, as they could have a remedy available to them under law if somebody was negligent. The best way to determine this is to hire an injury attorney who can review your case. To get justice for your child, call 713-222-1222 and schedule a free case review today.

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XXX Child Poisoning XXX – Signs Your Kid Has Been Poisoned

The number of harmful substances a child can get into in a home is nearly limitless. Add to this the fact that children are naturally curious, and it’s easy to see why half of all poisoning cases in the United States involves patients who are six years of age or younger. It’s important for parents to know what the signs of poisoning are so that treatment can be given right away. A few common signs of poisoning are:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Convulsions
  • Chemical burns on the face, lips or mouth
  • Severe throat pain
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting and stomach pain
  • Extreme drowsiness

In addition to these symptoms, a child may exhibit a foul or unusual odor after coming into contact with harmful chemicals. There could also be a chemical residue found on a child’s clothing. In some cases, parents discover poisoning has occurred after finding a container out of place or one with spilled contents.

Actions after Poisoning

If poisoning is suspected, help should be sought immediately, even if the symptoms appear to be relatively minor. That’s because a child’s condition can quickly change, and the sooner help is sought, the better the odds of recovery are. The first step should be to call the Poison Control Center at 800.222.1222 and provide as much information as possible. Some of the things the Poison Control Center may need to know include:

  • What was swallowed or ingested
  • Approximate amounts taken
  • When the poisoning occurred
  • Age, gender and weight of the child

Visiting the Emergency Room

Staff members at the Poison Control Center will sometimes recommend visiting an emergency room for treatment. When taking a child to an emergency room, it can be helpful to take the substance that was swallowed along, as this may help with determining what treatments to give. Parents should not try to determine on their own what toxin is responsible, as this could result in the wrong treatment being given.

When Negligence is Suspected

Childhood poisoning sometimes happens whenever other people are negligent in storing hazardous substances. Day care centers, preschools and child enrichment programs must all take reasonable precautions to keep children from accessing cleaning supplies or other chemicals, and could be held liable for damages if they fail to do so. Parents of children who are poisoning victims should try to determine the cause of it, as they could have a remedy available to them under law if somebody was negligent. The best way to determine this is to hire an injury attorney who can review your case. To get justice for your child, call 713.973.1300 and schedule a free case review today.

Shaken Baby Syndrome: What’s Going to Happen to Your Baby?

Shaken baby syndrome is a medical condition that occurs whenever an adult forcefully and violently shakes an infant or toddler. When a very young child is forcefully shaken, the brain hits against the skull because there is less cushioning available. This can cause serious injury or even death. A few of the side effects of shaken baby syndrome include:

  • Severe bruising
  • Bleeding around the head area
  • Retinal bleeding or damage
  • Neck or spinal cord damage
  • Fractured bones

Long-Term Effects

Children who are violently shaken may wind up with long-term or even permanent disabilities, provided they survive at all. The younger a child is when he or she is shaken, the greater the likelihood of serious injuries are. A few of the long-term effects of shaken baby syndrome are:

  • Brain damage
  • Learning disabilities
  • Paralysis
  • Hearing or vision loss
  • Seizures
  • Speech difficulties

How is Shaken Baby Syndrome Diagnosed?

Those who cause injuries to a child by shaking rarely admit to this when bringing an infant in for treatment. As a result, doctors who suspect shaken baby syndrome may need to perform additional tests or x-rays in order to confirm a diagnosis. In some cases, Child Protective Services may be asked to investigate an alleged incident as well. Parents may sometimes observe that their child is lethargic, has a loss of appetite or is unusually irritable. A baby can also be unable to lift his or her head or focus on an object for an extended period of time. If there is reason to believe a child has been shaken, medical attention should be sought immediately.

Sobering Statistics

According to information from the Pediatric Academic Societies, the number of infants suffering from shaken baby syndrome is on the rise. This organization estimates that there are between 1,200 and 1,400 cases of SBS each year, resulting in the death in one out of every four children who are affected. Young boys are shaken more often than girls are, with the perpetrator also being male in about 80 percent of the cases. Children who come from economically disadvantaged homes are also at a greater risk as well.

Civil and Criminal Penalties

While parents are sometimes responsible for shaken baby syndrome, it sometimes happens at the hands of caregivers as well. Responsible parents may pick up their infant from a childcare provider, only to find that unspeakable acts have been committed during their absence. Perpetrators of SBS can face criminal sanctions, and may also be sued in a court of law for damages. Parents whose child has been a victim can speak with a personal injury attorney in order to assert their rights. If you or a loved one has a child who has been injured, then call 713-222-1222 and schedule a free case evaluation for legal representation.

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Summer Camp Injuries: Is Your Camp Responsible?

Summer camps house a large number of children, not to mention the fact that they often revolve around physical activity and outdoor adventure. As a result, summer camp injuries happen quite often. Most of these injuries are relatively minor cuts, sprains and bruises, but occasionally children will wind up with more serious ones such as broken bones, concussions or even brain injuries. When this happens, most parents are left wondering who is responsible for the injuries.

Duty of Care

Operators of summer camps have a duty of care to provide a safe environment and proper supervisor for children. When camp managers fail to do these things, they can be considered negligent in a court of law. Some of the things a summer camp is expected to do are:

  • Ensure there is an adequate ratio of staff to campers
  • Inspect the facilities for hazards on a regular basis
  • Maintain equipment in proper working order
  • Provide proper training for staff members who oversee certain activities such as horseback riding or rock climbing
  • Give safety briefings to campers when appropriate
  • Ensure that children are divided into the appropriate group based on age or skill level when performing strenuous activities

Physical or Sexual Abuse

In addition to summer camp accidents, children sometimes unfortunately become the victim of physical or sexual abuse during their stay. This could result not only in civil penalties, but criminal ones against the perpetrator as well. Camp directors could be held liable for negligent hiring practices if they failed to perform the proper screenings ahead of time or refused to take action when similar incidents occurred in the past.

Preventing Summer Camp Injuries

The best thing that you as a parent can do is to find out as much as you can about a summer camp before enrolling your child in it. Talk with other parents whose children have attended this camp in order to find out what it is like. Visit the camp in person, and take a tour of the facilities to ensure they are well maintained. Find out about hiring practices, and meet your child’s counselor in person if possible.

By taking these precautions, you can help reduce the odds that your child will be injured while at summer camp. If he or she suffers an accident anyway, you should first ensure the proper medical attention is rendered before speaking with a personal injury attorney who can advise you of your rights.

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New Caney ISD School Bus Accident Injures 5 Students

At around 4:30 pm on Wednesday, February 26, a school bus carrying 26 students ended up in a ditch in Montgomery County. Five students were transferred to a nearby medical center with minor injuries.

The bus swerved off the road on East Martin Drive at Meadow Lane as the bus driver attempted to get unruly children to sit down shortly after leaving the New Caney ISD 6th Grade Campus.

All injured children are expected to be OK.

For more information on this school bus accident, visit click2houston.com

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