Taking your children to daycare, school, a music recital, a sporting event, or even just out for ice cream can be extremely dangerous. According to Esurance.com, many car accidents take place within 25 miles of your home. Most fatalities for car accidents happen between 6 pm and midnight.
Common Injuries for Children in California Car Accidents
Even if your child is no longer sitting in a car or booster seat, they are still at risk of suffering from a serious or fatal injury as a passenger. Common car accident injuries for children include closed head injuries, skull fractures, concussions, broken bones, injuries to their lungs and chest, and developmental and psychological delays as a result of their injuries.
The best way to minimize the risk of serious or fatal injuries for child passengers is to make sure that you are following California laws related to child safety seats and where the child rides in the car. Children who are under the age of two years old, weigh less than 40 pounds, or are less than 40” tall must be placed in a rear facing child safety seat in the back seat of your vehicle. Children who are under the age of eight years must be placed in a child safety or booster seat that corresponds with their weight. They should ride in the backseat.
Booster seats and child safety seats should always be used with seatbelts to further minimize injuries. Without a child safety seat or booster seat, your child could be injured by the seatbelt. Seatbelts are designed to protect adults. They are not properly placed for children. The use of a booster seat or child safety seat helps protect your child.
Involved in a Car Accident While Your Child Was a Passenger?
If you are driving a car in Orange County and you’re involved in a car accident and your child is in the car, there are some things that you need to do to protect your child and any possible claim you or your child may have as a result of the accident.
First, make sure that you call the police. The responding officer will take a report and give you a report number. This report is important because it provides the insurance companies and any car accident attorneys that get involved.
Next, take pictures (if you or your child does not need emergency medical attention) of the damage, the scene, and the road. This can be valuable documentation if you need to file a legal claim. You should also make sure that you get the insurance information of the other involved parties.
Call and report the accident to your insurance company. If your child was in a child safety or booster seat, make sure that your insurance company knows for claim purposes. If your insurance company pays out on your claim or if the other insurance company pays on your claim, they may include money for a new child safety or booster seat.
Make sure that both you and your child do seek medical attention. Internal injuries, concussions, and brain swelling may not necessarily show symptoms. Even if you don’t think an emergency room visit is necessary, make an appointment with your family doctor or pediatrician as soon as you can or go to an urgent care facility. In addition to being the best way to detect a potential injury, it may also be valuable in protecting any potential legal claims.
Do not use the child safety seat or booster seat again after it is involved in a car accident. It may look fine, but the material could be weakened and this could put your child in danger
For more information on what to do after your child has been injured in a car accident, including the type of financial compensation available, contact the experienced Orange County accident attorneys at Dennis Law Group today.