Child Injuries and Buying Secondhand
Having a baby can be quite expensive, and many parents try to save on costs by purchasing baby toys and other gear through secondhand vendors. However, a recent article from the News-Press & Gazette Co. suggests that buying secondhand can pose serious child injury risks.
For the most part, experts agree that newer toys are usually safe to buy secondhand, but it is important to make sure the toy was not subject to a recall. You should always disinfect used toys with a bleach solution before allowing your child to play with them. However, parents should be aware of the risks associated with older toys, in particular those made of metal and wood. Some of the older metal and wooden toys contain lead paint contaminants. Parents should also take note of BPA warnings for plastic toys.
What about larger equipment and furniture, such as strollers or high chairs? These can be particularly hazardous given the recent number of recalls for strollers and high chairs. It is important to visit the website of the Consumer Product Safety Commission to ensure that a recall has not been issued for a secondhand high chair or stroller that you are thinking about buying.
According to Dr. Brownfield, “if there’s a potential for harm, new is better unless you specifically know who owned it [and] you know its past.” Certain items should never be purchased used. For important safety reasons, always buy new cribs, bicycle helmets, and car seats.
Child Injury Statistics in America
How frequent are serious child injuries and deaths in our country? According to a recent report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), unintentional injuries “are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among children in the United States.”
In general, unintentional injuries involving children tend to fall into the following categories:
- Fires and/or burns
- Transportation-related injuries
Some important facts reported by the CDC include the following:
Each year on average, more than 12,000 children between the ages of 0 and 19 die because of an unintentional injury. In many cases, these injuries could have been prevented.
Male children had a higher fatal injury rate than female children. In fact, the rate of death for male children was nearly two times that for females, and males had a higher injury rate in each childhood age group.
Transportation-related injuries are the leading cause of death for children. These fatal accidents involve children who were motor vehicle passengers, as well as children who were pedestrians or bicyclists.
The leading causes of fatal childhood accidents vary depending on the age group. For children under the age of 1, suffocation was the leading cause of death (nearly 66 percent). For children between the ages of 1 and 4 years old, drowning was the leading cause of injury death. In children between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, the leading cause of death was being a passenger in an automobile accident.
Did your child suffer a serious or fatal injury? Contact an experienced child injury attorney to learn about your rights.