Articles Posted in Child Injury

An 18-month-old girl nearly drowned after she fell into an inflatable pool. The Gloucester Township reports that the near drowning incident occurred on Glamis Place in Gloucester Township. Officials say the child’s mother was visiting friends while children were playing at the residence. The young girl was found in the pool and an individual at the residence performed CPR until emergency crews arrived. She was reported as conscious and alert at the hospital. It is unclear if an adult was supervising the pool at the time of the incident.

According to a 2008 press release from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), drowning is the number one cause of accidental deaths among children. Approximately one in four fatal drowning accidents involve a child 14 years of age or younger. Many of these incidents occur in bodies of water other than a swimming pool. There were 69 cases of bathtub drowning incidents in 2002 and 17 child drowning incidents in inflatable pools in 2005. Serious or fatal New Jersey child injuries may also occur in hot tubs, buckets, fishponds, fountains, and toilets.

Any time there is a body of water on a property, it must be closely guarded and monitored by an adult. When a swimming pool or drowning accident occurs, the victim’s family would be well advised to discuss all of their legal options with a skilled personal injury lawyer. Financial compensation may be available for medical bills, hospitalization, pain and suffering, and other related damages.

Seven children were injured in a New Jersey bus crash after a van ran through a stop sign and crashed into their school bus. According to a news report in The Star-Ledger, the bus accident occurred at the intersection of Groom Street and Neville Street in Perth Amboy. Officials say the 46-year-old male driver of the van ran through a stop sign and struck a school bus carrying 42 elementary school students. All of the students were transported to a medical center as a precaution and seven were treated for minor injuries. Other injured victims of the crash include the 59-year-old school bus driver, the 49-year-old aide, and a 35-year-old passenger in the van. None of their injuries were life-threatening. The driver of the van was cited for failing to stop and for driving carelessly.

It is common for intersection accidents to involve a motorist running through a stop sign or a red light. Under N.J.S.A. 39:4-81, “The driver of every vehicle, the motorman of every street car and every pedestrian shall obey the instructions of any official traffic control device applicable thereto, placed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, unless otherwise directed by a traffic or police officer.”

The family of a child injured in a school bus accident would be well advised to contact an experienced personal injury attorney who will help protect his or her rights. Depending on the cause of the crash, the claim process may involve dealing with the school bus driver, the bus company, the at-fault party’s insurance company, or a number of other potentially-liable parties.

New Jersey Child Burn InjuryWhen a child suffers severe burn injuries, it can be a traumatic experience not only for the child, but also for his or her family. In addition to being incredibly painful, burn injuries often leave permanent scars and do extensive damage to the skin and nerves. Some burn injuries require prolonged hospitalization, rehabilitation, skin grafts, and other complicated surgical procedures that are not always covered by health insurance. If your child has suffered a burn injury, you may be wondering what your rights are and who should be held responsible for your substantial losses.

The family of an injured child may file a personal injury claim on their child’s behalf to pursue financial compensation for their medical bills and suffering. For the child injury claim to be successful, the claimant will have to prove that someone’s negligence resulted in the injuries.

Burn injuries can occur in many different ways. Here are some questions to ask depending on the circumstances of the accident. If the burn injuries resulted from a New Jersey car accident, was the motorist negligent in any way? Did a defective auto part or mechanical malfunction cause the vehicle to ignite? If the burns were suffered in an apartment fire, did the property owner fail to provide adequate fire prevention devices? Were there adequate smoke detectors and fire extinguishers on the property? Did the fire start because of a defective appliance or piece of equipment?

Children who are left in cars during hot weather can suffer a devastating injury or even death. Even though summer is winding down, the potential dangers of vehicular heat stroke still exist and children may still be at risk. It is important to practice and encourage safety measures in order to help prevent these tragic incidents.

Children who are left in hot vehicles can suffer hyperthermia. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported that hyperthermia is the leading cause of non-crash vehicle death for youths under the age of 14. NHTSA recently cited a study by the San Francisco State University’s Department of Geosciences, which shows that 49 children in the United States died from hyperthermia in the year 2010. In fact, 22 children have died this year alone as a result of hyperthermia.

Children should never be left unattended nor allowed to play in an unattended vehicle. Parents should know that cracking the windows is not an adequate way to prevent heat stroke and it is best to make sure all children are removed from the car each time they park. On a hot day, a vehicle can reach dangerous temperatures after only 10 minutes in the sun. Young children and infants are particularly vulnerable to heatstroke injuries. If a child shows signs of distress, nausea, confusion or strange behavior, it may be in the parent’s best interest to seek medical attention as these may be symptoms of heat stroke.

A 9-year-old boy was injured in New Jersey when the school bus in which he was a passenger collided with a Jeep. According to The Star-Ledger, the bus accident occurred on Route 35 in Woodbridge Township. Police believe the crash was caused by a 31-year-old man who turned his Jeep directly in front of the school bus. Of the 10 special education students on the bus, only the 9-year-old boy was injured. The driver of the Jeep has been cited for failing to yield right-of-way to a school bus.

Drivers making a left turn must yield right-of-way to all oncoming traffic. A failure to properly yield right-of-way may result in a serious injury accident. Drivers who violate New Jersey Statute 39:4-115 by failing to yield right-of-way to oncoming vehicles may be held liable for the accidents they cause.

According to the 2009 Department of Transportation’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System, 13 people were killed in New Jersey bus accidents. During that same year, 1,243 people were injured in New Jersey bus crashes. Bus companies, including school bus operators, have a legal obligation to provide the utmost duty of care to their passengers. This means that by law bus companies must act quickly to provide compensation to anyone injured while riding on one of their buses.

Last year, between Memorial Day and Labor Day, there were 400 swimming pool drownings in the United States, the majority of which were children, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The federal safety agency has investigated the procedures used to test pool and spa drain covers to see if they were sufficient to conclude the flow rate of these covers, and found that the protocols used by some facilities may not have been proper. As a result, some of the covers that have been certified by these facilities may not comply with certain safety standards. Pool and spa drains that use these covers with flow ratings that are inaccurate may fail to prevent the hidden dangers of drain entrapment.

The CPSC will hold a public hearing on April 5 to get answers from three testing labs about the protocols that are used to test pool and spa drain covers. Agency officials say they are specifically doing this to assess the potential impact on consumer safety and understand the changes that are being made to testing procedures.

CPSC reports that since 1990, 130 people have become entrapped on pool and spa drains, which resulted in 27 fatalities. Children are particularly vulnerable to such entrapment. How does this occur? The suction from a pool drain can be so powerful that it can even hold an adult under water for an extended period of time.

Children have been known to suffer harm or injury in a wide variety of accidents in New Jersey, with drowning and near-drowning accidents being one of the main causes of child injury and death during spring and summer months. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that out of all children 1 to 4-years-old throughout the United States who died in accidents in 2005, about thirty percent were killed in a drowning incident. While increases in pool safety and drowning prevention over the last few years have helped drowning rates decrease, drowning is still the second-leading cause of accidental injury-associated fatalities for children ages 1 to 14 years.

While any parent, sibling, family member or babysitter knows that children are at least a little accident-prone, serious accidents such as drowning may be caused by another person’s negligence. For instance, child drowning accidents in New Jersey may result from lack of adult supervision, faulty pool gates, inadequate pool/spa barriers and even intoxicated driving in an open water setting. In order to help prevent child drowning, it is important to make sure that either your pool or a friend/family member’s pool has an outside door alarm, pool covering, proper pool/spa barriers and that children are being monitored at all times. It only takes a second for a small child to get out of sight and put in harm’s way.

Child swimming pool accidents may raise several complex premises liability issues that would be best handled by a skilled attorney who has handled these types of cases and has personal injury and wrongful death litigation experience. If your child has suffered injury from a swimming pool accident, whether the incident took place at another person’s home or at a public pool, a New Jersey child injury attorney can help protect your child’s rights.

As one of the most silent and invisible forms of personal injury, lead poisoning has put far too many children at risk throughout the State of New Jersey. Based on a nj.com report, health officials have proposed new and stricter standards that should allow children suffering from lead poisoning quicker access to health services in addition to having their homes (as the site of exposure ) examined sooner. A major change made by New Jersey health officials is the proposed lowering of the blood-level threshold said to determine whether a child exposed to toxic lead requires follow-up care and whether an environmental investigation is needed to determine its source.

According to the article, health officials are now aware that lead levels once thought to be tolerable are now known to be far too dangerous, especially when it comes to children. Depending on the level of lead exposure, some of the injuries children could encounter from lead poisoning may include, but are not limited to:

  • Developmental problems
  • Damage to normal growth
  • Severe brain damage
  • Seizure
  • Coma
  • Wrongful death

Continue reading

Sixteen people, including a 9-month-old baby, were injured in a Glen Ridge three-vehicle accident at an intersection on October 26, 2008. According to a news report in the New Jersey Star-Ledger, the accident was caused by the driver of a Ford Expedition who ran a red light on Ridgewood Avenue and crashed into a gray Honda Accord before swerving into the path of an oncoming minivan as well.

There were reportedly 14 passengers in the Expedition. The 9-month-old was reportedly ejected through a rear passenger window when the SUV tilted sharply to the right during the collision. All 14 of the Expedition passengers as well as the drivers of the Honda and the minivan suffered injuries and were transported to area hospitals. Four, including two children that may have been the victims of a defective car seat, were said to be in critical condition.

This is a horrific auto accident. News and official reports place the fault on the driver of the Expedition who apparently broke the law by failing to stop for a red light at an intersection. The driver of the Expedition would no doubt be held responsible for the accident and resulting injuries to his or her passengers as well the other motorists. It is indeed a relief that no one was killed in this collision.

In 2004, a 9 year old boy broke his femur in a collision with another child as they ran to line up after recess. A Passaic County jury decided that the school was negligent in supervising the children because the school only had one teacher supervising 400 children. The child suffered permanent debilitating injuries. According to the boy’s attorney, the school system only offered $5,000 to settle the case. A jury felt otherwise and awarded $500,000 for the child’s pain and suffering.

Minor injuries to our children are an inevitable part of the growing up process. When those injuries, however, are the result of the negligence of another party, it can be very unsettling. An unsafe swimming pool or faulty playground equipment can lead to injuries that were similar to the ones the Passaic County youth suffered from. Additionally, unsafe child products, such as defective car seats, strollers, cribs, and toys can play a large role in injuries sustained by our children.

If your child has been injured at school or summer camp or by an unsafe toy or product, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible to determine if there is any liability. Contact the attorneys at Lependorf & Silverstein if you have any questions.