July 23, 2014

What if a Child is Abused or Molested by Another Child in a Day Care Center?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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A day care center should be a safe haven for children. It should be a place where children learn and play in a supportive and nurturing environment. Certainly, a child should be free from abuse, neglect, and molestation while under the supervisionb of the day care center. For licensed day care centers, background checks are typically required. This helps weed out prospective employees with a troubled past including a criminal history of abuse and / or molestation. Furthermore, day care center workers should be trained and prepared to meet the needs of all the children enrolled in the child care facility. Unfortunately, for some children at day care centers, there are days filled with abuse and molestation. Some incidents result from carelessness, negligence, and inattention of the day care center staff. Some incidents are caused by hands of the very workers charged with the responsibility of caring for the children. Other incidents are child on child incidents. Yes that's right, some children are abused, neglected, and / or molested by their classmates. When incidens like these area, I am asked by parents as a Child Injury Lawyer the following question:

Is a day care center legall liable or responsible when a child is abused, neglected, molested by another child in the same day care center?

Well, answer to this question like many other legal question is as follows: It depends on the facts and circumstances of the case. As a general statement, a day care center is not liable for every single incident that takes place within the facility. However a day care center is responsible for those incidents that are foreseeable and/or preventable with due care, attention, and supervision.

For instance, let's say children are seated in the classroom. It is a class of 4 year olds and the facility has met the proper census and staffing requirements. While seated in the classroom, one child grabs the other child in a matter of seconds in the private parts. This was an isolated incident that did not happen before to another student by the aggressive student. The teacher or day care center worker was 20 feet away, observed the incident, and took immediate action. Under this fact scenario, it would not appear that there would be a viable case to pursue because the incident took place in a matter of seconds. Furthermore, there is no history of abuse or neglect regarding the aggressive child. Proper supervision was in place. In summary, there does not appear to be any lack of supervision or action on the part of me day care center worker for the facility.

Let's look at another hypothetical situation. A 12-year-old child is left alone for one hour with a three-year-old child. The 12-year-old child a history of behavioral problems The 12-year-old was aggressive with other children in the day care setting. There is no day care center workers in the room or even within hearing distance of the two childrenfor this extended time period. Tragically, the molestation took place over a period of month without any detection or action on the part of the day care center. The State agency came in, investigated the incident, and cited the facility for a lack of supervision and inadequate staffing. Under this fact scenario, there would be a viable case to pursue. Of course, this is a just one example of many incidents that may form a basis for a civil case for compensation against the day care center. It is not required that an incident take place more than once or that the facility is cited by the State agency. However, these would be good facts to have for a case. Each potential case should be evaluated on its own facts and merits.

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Child Abuse, Sports Related Injuries, Playground Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 22, 2014

Does a Gym have a Duty of Reasonable Care as to the Babysitting - Child Care Area?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In the United States, some businesses including gyms have undertaken the responsibility of babysitting or child care while members are in other parts of the facility. A gym has no duty per se to watch children in general. Furthermore, there typically is no legal requirement for a gym to create, monitor, or supervise a child care area; however, when a gym undertakes or assumes a duty or responsibility then it should do so in a reasonable manner. Some people may believe that there are no regulations for a gym day care center. As such, a gym day care center or child care - babysitter area can act as it pleases and staff as desired. These type of unregulated day care centers should still be subject to a reasonable care standard. For instance, a gym cannot and should hire a convicted child sex offender to watch and care for the children at the day care center. This goes the same for a person with a violent criminal history. Furthermore, the gym child care area should be reasonably inspected for hazards and reasonably maintained by the staff of the gym. As for supervision, this should also be set forth by a reasonable standard. For instance, jump ropes and twine should not be left around infants and toddlers as there is a risk of strangulation. All poisons and other hazards should be kept away from the access of the children at the gym babysitting area.

Before a parent entrusts a child with a gym or any other business, a parent should find out about the policies and procedures for the area. Ask questions about the supervision and maintenance of the area. Ask about the qualification of the staff and the census regarding children being supervised and staff member on duty. If a child case area is not officially regulated then there may be some risks of the gym taking short cuts from providing the quality child care that the children well deserve.

It should be noted that the general elements of a case against a child care provider (licensed or unlicensed) are as follows:

1. Duty;

2. Breach of Duty;

3. Causation; and

4. Damages.

The same concepts would apply to a case against a homeowner. For instance, if a neighbor accepts the responsibility to watch a child for a few minutes or longer, then the neighbor assumes the duty of reasonable care with respect to the child. Like a day care center or a babysitting area, the neighbor should use his or her reasonable efforts to provide for a safe environment for the child and to provide solid supervision to keep the child out of harm's way. The level of care will depend on the age and maturity of the child being watched.

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Homeowner's Insurance, Shopping Center and Mall Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 21, 2014

What if my Child is Injured at a Hotel, Resort, or Motel?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In the United States, families travel at different times of the year including summer break, winter break and spring break. During most trips, the vacation is filled with fun, laughter, and good times. It is often a pleasurable adventure to be able to stay in a hotel, resort or motel. Unfortunately, some visits to hotels end very poorly in the firm of personal injuries to a child. Is a hotel liable for all injuries that take place on premises? The simple answe is No. A hotel is not liable for all injuries or incidents but is responsible for the ones in which the following elements can be proved:

1. Duty;

2. Breach of Duty;

3. Causation; and

4. Damages.

An example may shed some light on the above elements. Let's say that a child is a guest at a hotel. The 10 year old exits the hotel to the pool area and the door falls off of the hinges and injures the child. The child suffered a broken arm and required emergency care and follow up care by an orthopedist. Would this fit into the elements above? This fact pattern would probably constitute a case; however, it should be noted that each case should be evaluated on its own facts and circumstances. Here is a quick analysis of the aforementioned fact pattern:

1. Duty. The hotel had a duty to maintain a reasonably safe premises for guests including children. This duty included the responsiblity for periodic and careful maintenance and inspection of the premises.

2. Breach of Duty. While the door falling of the hinges may seem to speak for itself, the breach of duty element may need a bit more proof. For example, if there was rust and wear and tear on the door that could have been observed with periodic inspection - then it could be argued that the hotel failed to take necessary steps to inspect and repair the door.

3. Causation. This refers to the link between the breach of duty (improperly maintained door) and the damages otherwise known as the injuries. The door fell on the child and fractured the arm. The child did not enter the hotel with a broken arm. There appears to be a good nexus or causation between the breach of duty and the damages or injuries.

4. Damages. This refers to the economic losses (medical bills, loss of earning of parent caring for the child, etc. . . ) and the non-economic damages (pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life) that are associated with the personal injuries. Typically, there is no formula for calculating the injury. Again, each case must be evaluated and analyzed on its own facts and merits.

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Medical Care & Medical Bills, Damages & Comensation, Automobile Accidents, Day Care Cneter Injuries, Theme Park and Amusement Park Injuries, Store - Shopping Center - & Mall Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 20, 2014

Should Pillows Be Used for Props or Comfort of Infants During Sleep Time? (Answer: NO)

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Infants are at risk for suffocation and asphyixation when they are put to bed with pillows, loose blankets, and / or stuffed animals. If you ask most parents if they would put a plastic bag or a sheet of plastic in a crib with an infant, most parents will say that is ridiculuous and reckless in that it puts the child at risk for suffocation. Clearly, it would be a rare occurence for a parent, day care center, or other child care provider to put an infant to bed with a sheet of plastic or a plastic bag for these very reasons. However, many parents and child care providers fail to recognize the risk associated with blanets, pillows, and stuffed animals in the crib or sleeping area of a child. In fact, some blankets and pillows have cartoon characters on them and seem like a good, soft environment for a child to sleep on or near. The very problem with these items are the softness which can quickly turn into a trap if an infant becomes face down or in contact with the soft items to the point that breathing is cut off and / or drastically affected. It was recently reported in Arkansas that an infant died after she was put to sleep near two pillows. It was reported that the infant rolled over and ultimately suffocated. The mother was out of the room for a short period of time. This incident is one of many that unfortunately take place when a child is in a crib or sleeping area near soft objects.

It seems like such a common sense thing to do (make a child comfortable with some soft objects); however, as illustrated by above unfortunate death and too many other like it, it is not a good idea at all to have pillows in place at sleep time in the crib or sleeping area.

If a parent has a child in a day care center, a parent should ask to see the policies and procedures regarding sleeping arrangements. A parent should also ask to see the sleeping area and visit the day care center at random times including times when the chld is at sleep. If a parent sees a dangerous condition like an infant sleeping with or near pillows, blankets, or stuffed animals, the parent should asked to speak to the supervisor about the situation. There is an excellent article that is published by the American Academy of Pediatrics in the Journal Pediatrics at SIDS and Other Sleep Related Infant Deaths.

If a child is injured at a day care center, summer camp, or by another person, business, or government entity, a parent should contact a Child Injury Lawyer for advice, guidance, and legal representation when necessary. The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Shold Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, Shopping Center and Mall Related Injurie, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 19, 2014

Should Day Care Centers Follow Recommended Sleep Guidelines in Washington State and elsewher?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In Seattle Washington and other locations, day care centers have the responsiblity to supervise children in a safe and nurturing environment. One may think that sleep or nap time may be the one time of the "child care" day that is the safest for children. However, the truth of the matter that sleep or nap time can be a very dangerous time for a child especially when the day care center provider fails to provide a safe environment and even negligently allows dangerous conditions or items to be in or near the child's sleep area.

Dan Reblik, a news reporter with Q13 Fox News, covered this topic in the report - Infant deaths, dangers: Some day cares fail to follow safe-sleep guidelines. Reblik reported on several incidents that took place that resulted in the tragic death of a child including the following:

*18 month old child got tangled in a blind cord that was accessible from the crib area;

*5 month old child left in a crib with loose bedding, rolled over, and suffocated;

*3 1/2 month old child died after being put to sleep on her tummy.

Reblik did a good job in bringing light and conversation to this most important issue. Sleep recommendations and precautions are essential to prevent incidents like the ones above from taking place. Day care centers should follow the applicable day care laws and regulations. Furthermore, day care centers and child care providers should follow the recommendations of child care experts, safety advocated, and medical providers. A good summary of these recommendations can be found at What is One Article Every Parent and Day Care Center Should Read? (Safe Infant Sleeping Environment)

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, Homeowner's Insurance, Theme Park and Attraction Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 18, 2014

How can Child Care Providers ACT to prevent Heat Stroke and Hot Car Personal Injuries and Deaths?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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A problem that has been reported throughout the United States involves hot car deaths and heatstrokes resulting from leaving a child unattended in a vehicle that is turned off. Some child care providers leave children in a vehicle for a quick errand and see no harm in leaving a child alone in a vehicle for a few minutes which is all that is needed to cause serious permanent injuries or even the death of a child. In some instances, the child is left unattended in a vehicle due to inattention and other matters occupying the mind of the parent, child care provider, or other person. Incidents involving hot care deaths can be prevented. Whatever reminder system can be put into place - the impact can be quite dramatic if even one child is spared the horrendous end of life mistake by another person by leaving the child unattended in a vehicle.

Safe Kids is a National Organization dedicated to safety promotion and awareness. To prevent incident involving hot car deaths and heat stroke, Safe Kids have put out a Public Service Announcement as the following method / procedure:

A: Avoid heatstroke- related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car.

C: Create reminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child, such as a briefcase, a purse or a cell phone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important when the normal routine is changing.

T: Take action. If there is a child alone in a car, call 911.

Yes, parents and child care providers should keep ACT in mind and put this simple but effective system in place for the safety and protection of children. See Heat Stroke Prevention.

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injures, Automobile Accidents, Playground Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 17, 2014

Are Liability Waivers Valid for Injuries That Place at Summer Camps?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In order to limit claims and lawsuits against summer camps, administrators often utilize or attempt to utilize general releases as tools to stop or prevent or discourage parents taking action against the summer camp or its insurance company. One common question that is often presented to me as a Child Injury Lawyer is the following:

Is a liability waiver valid for injuries that take place at a summer camp?

The answer to this question like many legal questions presented to me is as follows: "It depends." The enforceability of a release waiver varies from State to State. Some States permit and, in turn, enforce liability waivers or releases and other States generally deem liability waivers against public policy. With respect to the States that invalidate or discourage such waivers, the rationale behind such a position is that liability waivers permit reckless conduct. If camp administrators feel that they are immune from liability, this, in turn, may encourage administrators to cut corners, cut staff, and delay the proper and necessary maintenance of the camp and its facilities.

As a Child Safety Advocate, it is my position , liability waiver should not give a summer camp a license or free reign to do what they want to do with respect to the safety and welfare of a child attending the summer camp. Furthermore many such liability waivers are poorly written or drafted and parents are not adequately informed of the risk of certain activities at a summer camp.

If a child is injured at the summer camp and there was a liability waiver or release signed, a parent should still consult a Child Injury Lawyer for advice, guidance, and legal representation when necessary. Research and investigation can be completed by the Child Injury Lawyer to determine if there is a cause of action to pursue even if there is a liability waiver or release signed by a parent. It is important that summer camps follow all State and local laws and regulations. In addition. it is important for summer camps to follow the recommended policies and procedures of any affiliated organizations at the summer camp is a part of. A summer camp should be a safe haven for a child. The summer camp should be a focal point of fun, adventure, and friendship. It is certainly unfortunate when a child is injured in a summer camp especially when the injuries could been prevented with safety precautions, better maintenance of the summer camp, and / or diligent supervision.

July 16, 2014

What if a Child is Injured at a Summer Camp Playground?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Summer camps and playground should be locations where children enjoy the joy of free time and fun. It is a time to make the most of summer in an active and usually safe environment. Unfortunately for some children, playgrounds are the sites of serious personal injuries for children. When a child is injured during playground activities, is there always a legal case or claim to pursue? The simple answer to this question is No. It is important to note that the word "always" makes a big difference in the question posed about legal rights and responsibilities.

With any kind of physical activity, a personal injury may occur. Just just because an injury occurs in a particular location like a summer camp or playground, it does not mean that the operator of the summer camp or property owner where the playground is located becomes liable for the resulting personal injuries.

There are four essential elements to pursue a claim or case for personal injuries. These elements include the following:

1. Duty;
2. Breach of Duty;
3. Causation; and
4. Damages.

It should also be noted that in many States there are additional or different requirements with a public entity is involved. For instance in many states public schools have a different standard of care then a private owner of property. Many such States have laws in place to protect government entities and limit the damages and types of cases that can be pursued against the government entity. With respect the playground cases against a private school, day care center, church, summer camp, or other entity, a parent should contact a Child Injury Lawyer for advice, guidance, and when appropriate legal representation. When evaluating a case involving the personal injuries of a child, there are two essential issues that would be evaluated by the Child Injury Lawyer. One issues involves the maintenance of the playground equipment and other involves the supervision of the children during play. It is vital that the playground equipment is routinely inspected and repaired to prevent or limit injuries to children. Furthermore, it is important that there be adequate supervision for the number of children on the playground and that the supervision be focused on the children rather than in a laptop, tablet, or mobile phone.

The book titled - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, Theme Park and Attraction Injuries, Swimming Pool and Aquatic Injuries and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 15, 2014

What Safety Precautions Should be Taken in Parking Lots of Day Care Centers and Summer Camps?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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On any given day, the parking lot can be a dangerous area for child. This is especially true during operating busy hours at day care centers, schools, and summer camps. During pick up and drop off times, there is a crowd of vehicles that enter and exit the parking lot area. Because it is well-known that both vehicles and children will be in close proximity in parking lots of day care centers schools and summer camps, it is important that administrators, teachers, counselors, and other monitors pay close attention, put safety precautions in place like ropes, flags, and cones, and direct both pedestrian and vehicle traffic in a careful and reasonable manner.

Unfortunately, children are injured in parking lots of schools day, day care centers, camps, and churches on the far too frequent basis. This is especially troubling when the injuries or incidents could have been prevented with a better safety precautions, a better layout of the parking lot, the designation of safety zones and do not enter zones, and with diligent supervision through the actions and close observation of the child care provider. If a child is injured in the parking lot of a child care provider or any location for that matter, a parent can and should seek out legal advice for the parking lot - accident related personal injuries. A Child Injury Lawyer can help reivew the respective rights of the injured child and the responsibilities of the driver and the day care center.

The book titled - When the Wheels Stop Spinning - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Parents Need to Know After the Accident - has chapters on Pedestrian Injuries, Bicycle Injuries, Automobile Accidents, and other topics. You can get his book for free at When the Wheels Stop Spinning. Another helpful resource for parents is the book - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know. This book has chapters on Automobile Accidents, Day Care Center Injures, School Injuries, Medical BIlls and Insurance, and other topics, You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 14, 2014

What are the Duties of a Day Care Center as to Inspection and Maintenance of the Playground? (Dangers of Rope, Twine, and Cords)

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Proper maintenance and supervision are essential for the safety of children in school, day care, summer camp, and other locations. There have been reports of children suffering serious injuries even dying as a result of items being left in and around the playground. Two recent incidents involved the strangulation of a child in a playground. One was strangulated by a jump rose and the other was strangulated by some type rope or twine. If the items were not left in the playground area and / or there was proper supervision in place, the incidents would have likely been prevented.

These tragic deaths and other injuries are valuable lessons for the all summer camps, day care centers, and schools. Of course, lessons taught and learned should not be at the expense, pain, or suffering a child or his family. Supervision and maintenance are vital to the safety and welfare of our children. Children, especially those who are pre-school and elementary school age, do not recognize the dangers of their actions or the actions of their playmates. If children had good judgment and always acted reasonably, then there would not be much of a need for supervision or maintenance at all. However, as we should all know, children lack property safety awareness and need that certain level of supervision and guidance by responsive adults who serve as child care providers.

Supervision would have prevented the child from engaging in dangerous activity of wrapping a string, cord, or jump rope around the neck which led to the disastrous consequences. Because of these and other incidents, it is important that day care centers, schools, and supervisors of playground areas be inspected during the day to make sure that the playground equipment is well-maintained, there is no debris or other dangerous items left behind, and that dedicated and undistracted supervision is in place for the safety of children.

Playgrounds are usually locations were children have fun and spend time with their friends and family. Unfortunately for some children and their families, a playground can be the location where the child took his or her last breath.

When a child is injured as a result of the neigence or carelessness of a school, day care center, business government entity or other child care provider, it is important for a parent to seek legal advice. A Child Injury Lawyer can provide that necessary direction for parent and the during the most trying times in the aftermath of a serious personal injury or tragic wrongful death of a child. The book - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Automobile Accidents, Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Theme Park and Attraction Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

It should be noted when there is a death of a child there is no word in the English language for the aftermath of the tragedy. When a spouse dies, the surviving spouse is a widow or widower. When both parents die, a child is referred to as an ophran. However, when a chldies unnaturally and decades before the child should, there is a hole left in the hearts of the family, friends, and community. No legal case and no amount of compensation can ever replace a child. This sentence should be repeated again. No legal case and no amount of compensation can ever replace a child. However, the law does recognize a cause of action and, at times, the right and just cause of action should be taken to compensate the grieving parents for their loss and to send a message of sorts that children should be cared for property and when that level of care fails - action should and will be taken.

July 13, 2014

Is a Summer Camp Required to Carry Liability Insurance?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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During the summer, millions of children enjoy activities and sports at camps across the nation. Most days are filled with fun, laughter, and time spent with friends doing fun things. Unfortunately for some children, some days are quite the opposite when the child suffers a personal injury at a summer camp. Any time the child participates in an activity whether it is sports, horseback riding, arts & crafts, or another type of activity - there is a risk of injury. It is the responsibility of the summer camp to provide appropriate supervision, safety precautions, and proper maintenance in order to prevent personal injuries to children attending the camp.

Many personal injuries suffered at a summer camp can be prevented with due diligence, attentiveness, and just plain old common sense as to the best interests of the children. When a child is injured at the summer camp due to the negligence or fault of the summer camp or its staff, a parent, on behalf of the injured child, can pursue a claim or case to seek compensation for the injured child. As a Child Injury Lawyer, I am often asked whether a summer camp is required to carry liability insurance. Like many such questions, the answer depends on a number of factors including the following:

the location of the summer camp (City, County, and State);

the size and type of summer camp;

the ownership or control of the summer camp (private, religious affiliated, or public);

licensing of the summer camp;

local and state regulations applicable to the summer camp; and

membership of the summer camp in accreditation type organizations (public or private).

Liability insurance requirements vary from state to state and even county to county. Some jurisdictions have no state statute requiring insurance while others do. If the summer camp is affiliated with a particular organization or has a certain membership, there may be requirement as part of the membership or accreditation requirements that the summer camp have liability insurance in place. It should be noted that just because there is a law or membership requirement that liability insurance be in place, this is not by any means a guarantee that the summer camp will follow those laws, requirements, or membership requirements. When a child is injured at a summer camp is often helpful to retain the services of a Child Injury Lawyer for advice, guidance, and legal representation when necessary to seek compensation on behalf of the injured child. Through an investigation by a Child Injury Lawyer, it can be determined whether the summer camp had liability insurance in place and/or the suitable assets in place in order to seek compensation on behalf of the injured child.

The book - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, Sports Related Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

July 12, 2014

What Safety Measures Should Day Care Centers, Schools, and Summer Camps Take to Prevent Hot Car Deaths and Hyperthermia Injuries?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Day care centers, schools, summer camps, and other child care care providers should have protocols and procedures in place to prevent what is been termed Hot Car Deaths
otherwise known as death due to hyperthermia. Childcare providers including parents at times leave a child unattended in the vehicle. This is especially troubling when the car is turned off there is no air-conditioning on the temperatures outside our 70° or higher.

Before addressing the issues involving Hot Car Deaths or hyperthermia, it should also be pointed out that there are dangers in leaving a small child unattended vehicle that is turned on with the air-conditioning running. There are number of other injuries that can take place when a child is unattended in a vehicle including but not limited to strangulation by a seatbelt, choking on small object small object left in the car, abduction, wandering away from the vehicle, and other dangers involved with leaving the child unattended.

Regarding Hot Car Death and hyperthermia, this tragic phenomena that is been taking place in a number of communities this summer and other times of the year. Day care centers, schools, summer camps, and other child care providers should have a written procedure in place for the loading and unloading the children regarding transportation. The simple roll, clip board, paper, and pen can help prevent most tragic these tragic incidents from taking place. Yes, we have technology available to us these days in the form smart phones, tablets, computers, GPS devices and other items. While technology is great and can also be used as a tool the supervision and roll call of children, all that is needed is some common sense, consistencny, and due diligence on the part of the child care providers.

Here is a simple policy and proceedure that can be incorporated and followed by every school, day care center, and summer camp regardless of the size of the facility, the number of children enrolled, or the budget of the facility.

1. Creat a list of children being transported during the day.

2. When a child enters the bus, make a note on the list by a checkmark or other designation. Do the same when a child departs the bus.

3. Before departing from a given location, complete a roll call and head count.

4. Repeat the above steps as needed if there are multiple stops.

5. For the last stop, take a roll call before the children depart the bus. Take another roll call when they get off the bus and yet another roll call at the destination.

6. When it is believed that all children have departed the bus, the bus driver should do a physical and visual sweep of the van and bus. That mean that the bus driver should physically search the bus and check every seat, under the seat, and all other areas where a child may be left behind. This should be done twice. The completion of the physical visual sweep should be documented on the roll call list or document.

7. If another attendant or child care worker is available, this child care workers should also perform a physical and visual sweep of the bus. The completion of the physical visual sweep should be documented on the roll call list or document.

Of course, the above procedure is just one example of many such procedures that can be utilized for the safety and protection of our children. It should also be noted that parents and other relatives, at times, leave a child unattended in a vehicle. While it may seem to be overboard to have formal procedure in place for a parent or family member, there should be some kind of reminder to make sure that all children are removed from the vehicle especially during hot summer months and freezing winter months. Some parent put a shoe in the back seat as a reminder. Others put a purse or wallet in the back seat. It may also be helpful to have a sign or sticker posted as a reminder. Some even put a reminder on a key chain. Whatever system or reminders are used - it is the best interest of the child that should be the focus of parents and child care providers alike.

If you have a child enrolled in a day care center, summer camp, or school, ask the childc are provider for a copy of the written policies and procedures for the facility in general and specifically the policy and procedures for transportation, field trips, roll calls, and attendance. It is also helpful to talk to the child care providers to discuss these and other safety matters as well. If the child is been injured while in the care of a day care center, school, summer camp, or other childcare provider, it is often helpful to discuss the incident and resulting injuries with a Child Injury Lawyer.

The book - The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know - has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Automobile Accidents, Medical Bills and Insurance, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

 
 
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