It’s a frightening thought no parent wants to imagine: your child is injured in a car accident. The fear, worry, and anxiety you feel when the news reaches you can quickly overwhelm even the strongest among us.
As a parent, it’s understandable to feel overwhelmed. The emotional toll is extensive, and knowing what to do next can be confusing. However, having a clear plan in place can make a difference in ensuring the best possible outcome.
While you can’t go back in time to prevent the accident, you can take steps to help your child recover and to protect their rights. Let’s look at how to do that by first understanding the statistics surrounding youth injuries and fatalities on the road, what to do after an accident, and how working with a personal injury attorney is in your child’s best interest.
Child Passenger Injury Statistics
At our law firm, we witness up close the devastating effects that car accidents can have on families. Perhaps the most tragic outcomes involve injuries to children. Car accidents injure or kill thousands of children in the United States every year.
Here are some sobering child passenger injury statistics that highlight the need for increased safety measures:
- In 2021, 710 children under the age of 13 were killed in car accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
- Of those children who died, more than a third were not restrained in car seats, booster seats, or seat belts.
- In 2020, there were over 63,000 children injured in car accidents.
- The leading cause of death and injury for children in car accidents is ejection from the vehicle. Children who are not properly restrained are more likely to be ejected from the vehicle in an accident, and therefore, more likely to sustain severe or fatal injuries.
These statistics are heartbreaking but also emphasize the importance of taking child passenger safety seriously. Here are some tips for protecting your child in the car:
- Always use an appropriate car seat or booster seat that fits your child’s age and size.
- Make sure the car seat or booster seat is installed correctly per the car seat manufacturer’s specifications. Many parents unknowingly improperly install car seats, which limits the effectiveness of the seats to protect the children.
- Never put a rear-facing car seat in the front seat of a car with an active passenger-side airbag. Rear-facing seats should only be placed in the back seat.
- Use seat belts properly to protect older children and teens. Ensure they keep the strap across their chest and lap, with the shoulder belt crossing over the breastbone for optimal safety.
It’s National Child Passenger Safety Week. It’s a good time to have your child’s seat checked to ensure it’s the right seat, that it’s properly installed, and to confirm there are no issues with the seat that could cause your child harm. In Lancaster County, we have quite a few locations where they check your child’s seat for free. You can find a full list, here.
We understand how traumatic car accidents can be, especially when they involve children. We urge all parents to take child passenger safety seriously and to do their part in preventing these heartbreaking accidents.
Sometimes, even with proper safety precautions in place, children can still suffer injuries in a car accident. If your child was injured through the neglect of another driver, reach out to a car accident injury attorney to understand the next steps to protect your child’s rights.
Steps to Take After Your Child is Injured in a Car Crash
A car crash can be a traumatic event for anyone, but when a child is involved, the impact can be especially devastating. As a parent or guardian, it is important to know what steps to take after your child is injured in a car crash.
Here are some key things to keep in mind:
Seek medical attention immediately: The first priority in any car crash, of course, is to ensure that everyone involved is safe and receives the medical attention they need. If your child has been injured, seek medical attention right away, even if the injuries do not appear to be serious at first. Some injuries, such as concussions, may not be immediately apparent but can have serious long-term effects if left untreated.
Document everything: It is important to document as much information as possible about the car crash and your child’s injuries. Take pictures of the accident scene and any visible injuries to your child, get the names and contact information of any witnesses, and keep a detailed record of all your child’s medical treatments and expenses.
Contact an experienced car accident attorney: If your child has been injured in a car crash, it is important to consult with a car accident attorney who has experience representing clients in similar situations. An attorney can help you navigate the legal process, work with insurance companies, and advocate for your child’s rights.
Take care of your child’s emotional needs: A car crash can be a traumatic experience for a child, and it is important to attend to their emotional needs as well as their physical needs. Seek counseling or therapy for your child if needed, and provide a supportive, calm environment in which they can heal and recover.
The aftermath of a car crash can be a stressful and overwhelming time, especially when a child is involved. However, by taking the right steps, you can ensure that your child receives the medical attention they need, advocate for their rights, and provide a supportive environment for their emotional recovery. Remember, you are not alone – there are resources available to help you through this difficult time.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
No parent ever wants to see their child injured, let alone in a car accident that could have been prevented in the first place. When a child is hurt in a car crash, it can be an overwhelming and devastating time for both the child and the family.
As a parent, one of your top priorities is ensuring that your child receives the best medical care possible, but that can come with a significant financial burden. This is where a personal injury attorney comes in to help ease the burden and secure compensation for your child’s injuries.
Here are some ways that a personal injury attorney can help your family after your child has been injured in a car accident:
Provide a free legal consultation: Many personal injury attorneys offer a free consultation to discuss your case. During the consultation, the attorney will review the details of the case and determine whether you have a claim worth pursuing.
Investigate the accident: An experienced personal injury attorney will thoroughly investigate the accident to determine who was at fault. This includes gathering evidence, reviewing police reports, and interviewing witnesses.
Negotiate with insurance companies: Insurance companies often try to settle cases for the least amount of money possible. A personal injury attorney can advocate for your child and negotiate a fair settlement that covers all damages, including medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and future medical needs.
File a lawsuit if necessary: If the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, a personal injury attorney can file a lawsuit on your behalf. They can represent your child in court and fight for a fair and just outcome.
In addition to providing legal assistance, a personal injury attorney can alleviate some of the stress you and your family are facing. They understand that your child’s well-being and recovery are top priorities, and they will work tirelessly to secure the compensation your child deserves. Reach out to a personal injury attorney today to discuss your case and get the help you need.
Car Accident Injury Law Firm in Lancaster, PA
If your child has suffered injuries from a car accident, you need an experienced attorney by your side to help you navigate the legal process of getting the compensation you deserve. At Georgelis, Larsen & Sabatino Injury Law Firm, P.C., we understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll that a car accident can have on your family. That’s why we work tirelessly to ensure that your child’s rights are protected and that you receive the maximum compensation possible.
Our team of skilled attorneys and paralegals has decades of experience in handling complex personal injury cases, including those involving children. We know how to investigate accidents, gather evidence, and negotiate with insurance companies to achieve the best possible outcomes for our clients. We provide personalized attention and compassionate representation, ensuring that you and your child receive the care and attention you need during this difficult time.
We offer free consultations, where we can discuss the details of your case and answer any questions or concerns you might have. We never charge upfront fees and only receive payment if we recover compensation for you. With our team on your side, you can rest assured that you have experienced and dedicated advocates fighting for your child’s rights and well-being.
Contact us today to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced personal injury attorneys. Let us help you ease the burden and stress of a car accident and work towards a brighter future for your child. Call us at 1-800-HURT-NOW or start a conversation online to begin your journey towards justice.