In Oklahoma, there are nearly 15 deaths of children under the age of five caused by car accidents every year, and many more young children suffer avoidable injuries in motor vehicle collisions. In fact, the Oklahoma death rate is 40% higher than the national average for this age group, and in 2004, more than 73% …
In Oklahoma, there are nearly 15 deaths of children under the age of five caused by car accidents every year, and many more young children suffer avoidable injuries in motor vehicle collisions. In fact, the Oklahoma death rate is 40% higher than the national average for this age group, and in 2004, more than 73% of children five and under who were killed in an Oklahoma car accident were not in a proper child restraint. Unfortunately, even children who are properly restrained in car seats can suffer serious injuries in the event of an Oklahoma car accident. If your child was injured or killed in a motor vehicle collision in Oklahoma, contact our experienced car accident attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center today. Our law firm is located in Oklahoma City, and our team of qualified car accident lawyers can help you pursue the compensation you are entitled to.
Prevalence of Child Injuries and Fatalities in Collisions
Because of their delicate bone structures, toddlers and infants are exceptionally vulnerable to injuries sustained in Oklahoma car accidents. In a collision in which the car is traveling only 30 miles per hour, a 10-pound baby not restrained in a car seat will be thrust into the windshield or dashboard with a force of 300 pounds, which is equivalent to the baby falling off a three-story building. At even just 25 miles per hour, which is the speed limit in most neighborhoods, a 30-pound child not restrained by a car seat will be thrown forward with the force of 750 pounds if the driver breaks suddenly.
Serious child injuries can also occur during non-crash situations in which a child is thrown against the vehicle interior during a sudden turn, swerve or stop. A common cause of major injury and death to children in vehicles is being crushed by adults who are not wearing their seat belts. In fact, one out of four serious injuries to vehicle passengers occur when occupants are thrown into one another during a car accident. For example, a 100-pound mother not wearing a seat belt and holding her baby in her lap becomes a 3,000-pound force in a car accident, which is more than enough to crush the child in her arms against the dashboard.
How to Prevent Child Injury in Oklahoma Car Accidents
According to the Oklahoma Child Restraint Law, all children 0-5 years of age are required to be buckled into a car seat, and children six and older are required to use a car seat or seat belt. Keep in mind that children tend to mimic their parents. If you set a good example by always wearing your seat belt, your child is likely to follow suit, and this simple act could prevent the child from suffering serious injury or being killed in an Oklahoma car accident. Overall, you should make it a rule that the car doesn’t move until everyone is restrained in a car seat or seat belt, regardless of how big of a rush you are in at that particular time.