Heatstroke Injuries to Children in Carolinas Likely through Summer

Officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently teamed up with those at Safe Kids Worldwide to help to raise awareness about the risks and the consequences of heatstroke injuries to children in Asheville and elsewhere.

Throughout the entire month of July, officials will be conducting a number of events highlighting the dangers accompanied with leaving children in a hot vehicle. Heatstroke continues to be the number one cause of vehicle-related, non-crash accident deaths for kids who are under the age of 14. In 2011, there were nearly 35 of these fatal accidents reported to officials nationwide. These accidents are oftentimes just that — accidents — but can be prevented with a little bit of awareness.
“We’re working to get the message out to families with young children,” said Ray LaHood with the USDOT.

Our Asheville personal injury attorneys understand that parents, guardians and caregivers are the first line of defense against these kinds of accidents. You might think that leaving a child in a car could never happen to you, but you’d be surprised. The recent announcement of the new partnership is being used to build on the national campaign, “Where’s baby? Look before you lock.” because these types of accidents are still all too common. There have been more than 530 children killed in the United States as a result of vehicular heatstroke since 1998. Most of these kinds of accidents happened to children who are 3-years-old or younger.

These kinds of accidents can happen to anyone. Most of them are accidental and it can even happen with the most conscientious and loving parents. During the hot summer months it’s especially important for parents and guardians to be aware of who is in the vehicle and who gets out when the vehicle stops.

Even when the outside temps are in the low 80s, the temps inside a car can reach a deadly level in just 10 minutes. This is even true when the windows are cracked or rolled down. The bodies of our young ones are extremely vulnerable in these situations. Kids who are under the age of 4-year-old are at the greatest risk for these kinds of injuries.

In 2010, there were nearly 35 fatalities resulting from in-car heatstroke, or hyperthermia. Although that’s a number that’s down from 49 in 2009, officials are still worried and are working diligently to spread the word and to raise awareness about these dangers. There are hundreds more who are injured in these kind of accidents every year. Some of the most common injuries include a loss of hearing, blindness and permanent brain injury.

Many times, these kinds of accidents happen after a child hops into a car when a parent isn’t looking. Other causes result from when a parent or a guardian who isn’t used to transporting a child inadvertently forgets a quiet infant in a car seat in the back of the vehicle. Help to protect our little ones and check every seat every time you leave your car.

The Lee Law Offices, P.A. represents parents and children who have been injured or killed in car accidents in the Asheville and elsewhere throughout the Carolinas. Call to schedule a free and confidential appointment to discuss your case at 1-800-887-1965.

More Blog Entries:

Risks of Child Injury in Rock Hill: Child Seat Safety, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, April 15, 2012

North Carolina Back-Over Car Accidents Continue to Cause Child Deaths, Injuries, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, March 3, 2012

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