Articles Posted in South Carolina

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By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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South Carolina authorities are investigating how a toddler wandered off from a College Park Road day care center. The Department of Social Services spokeswoman, Marilyn Matheus, said that a two-year-old girl walked off the property of Noah’s Ark Daycare Center and Kindergarten while she was under their care. The toddler was found uninjured and DSS was contacted.

Matheus said that the day care center, located at 1011 College Park, will be investigated by agents from the Department’s Childcare Licensing Regulations and Out of Home Abuse and Neglect unit. Spokesman Dan Moon said that a Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office incident report is unavailable because deputies were not called to the scene.

Once a toddler learns how to walk, the prospect of them running away can cause a parent real anxiety. Running away from their parents can quickly become a game for children as it usually results in them getting a lot of attention. Toddlers use their new found ability to walk as a way to establish independence from their parents. At this stage of a child’s development, it is important that parents make it clear that running away is not acceptable behavior. For more information on this topic, see Tot walks away from day care.

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By DavidWolf, Attorney Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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A nine-year-old boy suffered permanent injuries as a result of a Bible camp game at a South Charleston church. His parents filed a lawsuit against the church and alleged that their son fell and struck his face on a carpeted-cement floor. According to the lawsuit, the boy suffered from severe lacerations on his bottom lip and chin, damaged his teeth and drifted out of consciousness. The boy’s lawyer, Benjamin Salango, said that the laceration severed a nerve in his face, which has affected his ability to speak. The boy’s medical condition and injuries required therapy through a speech therapist regularly. In addition, the boy sustained a permanent scar from the cut, said the lawyer.

The boy was allegedly injured in the church game called “Wrap n’ Run.” According to the law suit filed in Kanawha Circuit Court, camp counselors at the Davis Creek Church of the Nazarene first organized the game in June 2009. The lawsuit stated that one child would bind another child in an entire roll of plastic wrap. The wrapped child would then hop from a starting line to a finish line in a race against another child. The lawsuit stated that church counselors ignored a suggestion in the game’s rules to allow the child’s arms to remain free while racing. The lawsuit also stated that this is the second time a child was injured during the same game at the church; another child fell backwards and hit his head on a sanctuary pew.

Salango said that the family had been in negotiations with the church’s insurance company for a settlement but were unable to reach an agreement. The child’s injuries have allegedly cost the family almost $20,000 in medical expenses, said the lawyer. For more information, see family suing South Charleston church after child’s camp injury.

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By David Wolf, Attorney Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In Columbia, South Carolina, a two month investigation by WLTX uncovered what parents should know about their child’s safety in daycares. WLTX found that several day care facilities had issues noted by the Department of Social Services (DSS). There were a variety of issues listed: unsafe facilities, abusive treatment of children, lack of supervision, serving expired milk to infants, and caregivers listening inappropriate music and watching soap operas in the presence of children.

The DSS has a frequently updated database that provides information about complaints and deficiencies for every licensed day care center in the state, both commercial and at-home facilities. DSS visits commercial day care facilities regularly unannounced, but does not visit at-home day cares unless a complaint has been made. DSS shut down 41 facilities since 2010, and generally, they were shut down after a long series of violations.

Bunnie Ward, Director of Early Education at United Way, said that you should ask questions before enrolling your child in a South Carolina daycare, do your homework, and be diligent and observant once your child is enrolled. United Way suggests every parent learn to “S.H.O.P.” The metaphor “S.H.O.P encourages parents to carefully evaluate each of the following areas in a day care center: “S”-supervision, “H”-health and safety, “O”- operation, and “P”-parent friendly.

Experts also agree that the best approach is for South Carolina parents to be proactive: Ask a lot of questions and make an educated decision about where your child will attend day care. For more information on this topic, see South Carolina Daycare Safety: WLTX Investigates.

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By David Wolf, Attorney Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In the United States, most day child care facilities are legally required by law to be licensed. The Child Care Licensing Program in South Carolina enforces laws and regulations established by the State Legislature to ensure that child care facilities provide the basic health and safety requirements for all children in their care.

Despite these licensing requirements, a day care facility in York County was operating without a license. This discovery became apparent when a baby under the care of Kristyn Shipman Edley, 26 died. Edley was arrested and booked at the York County Detention Center. The arrest was for licensing only.

The baby who died in the care of Edley was Collan Gibson, the three-month old son of Glen and April Gibson. He died on April 27, and an autopsy performed the next day was inconclusive. However, police reports note that Edley placed the baby in a chair that was designed for infants with a straddle harness, and the baby went to sleep. About 30 minutes later Edley checked on the baby, and found him blue in the face and not responsive. The baby was taken to Piedmont Medical Hospital, located in Rock Hill where he sadly died.

Two weeks later Edley was charged with the day care violation, which is a misdemeanor charge. If convicted, she will face a 1,500 fine, six months incarceration or both. The Department of Social Services issued the following statement: “From a regulatory standpoint, Ms. Edley will receive notice to cease operation immediately. From an investigative standpoint, our Out of Home Abuse and Neglect unit will continue its investigation.” For more information on this topic, see day care provider charged.

Published on:

By David Wolf, Attorney Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Child abuse is described as any act of commission or omission that endangers or impairs a child’s physical or emotional health and development. Child abuse includes any damage done to a child which cannot be reasonably explained and which is often accompanied by an injury or series of injuries appearing to be non-accidental in nature.

A three–month-old Anthony Peoples Jr. was found unresponsive at a day care center in Barnwell, South Carolina. An autopsy was performed on Thursday, but the results are still pending. The child care center where the incident took place is currently closed. The Department of Social Services (DSS) and the police have launched an investigation to determine what happened. The DSS will cite any regulatory violations discovered in the course of the investigation.

Despite the efforts of the South Carolina child protection system, child maltreatment fatalities remain a serious problem. Although the deaths of children due to illness and accidents have been closely monitored. Child deaths that result from physical assault or severe neglect can be more difficult to track because the perpetrators are less likely to reveal information about the incident. For more information on this topic, see Updated: infant found dead at Barnwell County home day care center.

Published on:

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In South Carolina, working parents and families rely on day care centers to provide a safe and healthy environment for their children. Day care centers in South Carolina are regulated by the South Carolina Department of Social Services (otherwise known as DSS). While a day care center is required to be licensed, many South Carolina day care centers / child care centers operate without a license and without any government oversight. Even ones that are licensed are not inspected that frequently. As such, it is important for South Carolina parents to inspect the day care center before admission and during admission and at different times of the day. Parents should speak to day care workers to find out more about the worker and about the facility. It is also helpful to speak to and befriend other parents who have children at the day care center to help oversee the care for your child and others. Being proactive and inquisitive can go a long way to making sure that the day care center provides a safe and healthy educational environment for children. South Carolina child care facilities that cut corners, bypass licensing requirements, and that focus solely on fees or profits often times fail to follow general safety guidelines which in turn lead to serious personal injuries of children under their care. For more information on this topic, see Parents Should Be Proactive in Evaluating and Monitoring South Carolina Day Care Centers.

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By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Spring Break brings high school, college, and other people out to bars, restaurants, and the beach. Most people go to Spring Break destinations to have fun with friends and meet new ones. Unfortunately, Spring Break crowds make for busier roads and, yes, drivers who are under the influence of alcohol and / or drugs. Four fatal crashes were recently reported in the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. See 4 Fatal Crashes At Beach on Spring Break Saturday.

Three of the four accidents took place between the hours of 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. according to the South Carolina Highway Patrol. Local and State South Carolina Police officials want drivers to use more caution and patience when driving in Spring Break areas especially at night. There is a responsibility on the part of the driver as well the responsibility of the pedestrian and bicyclist who are in Spring Break areas.

Published on:

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Due to an increasing awareness and concern about a child safety at day care centers, Kendra’s law has been on the books in South Carolina since August 2010. A consequence of the law is that people are starting to pay more attention to what goes on into child care centers. The law seems to come at a perfect time. The National Child Abuse and Neglect Data reported more than 1700 child deaths were reported in 2007. Some day care centers in South Carolina are easing parents mind by installing new technology in the facilities. Essential Childcare has placed cameras all throughout the center allowing parents to watch their children from a secure website or mobile device. The center has made the process of pick-up and drop-off digital as well. The only people who can pick up a child must be registered in the system ahead of time. A person picking up a child at Essential Childcare will have to be registered in the system ahead of time, touch his/her finger to a machine, and then input a code to unlock the doors. The new technology developments are the result of putting safety at the forefront of child care. For more please read South Carolina child care center implements technology for increasing child safety.

Allowing parents to oversee the care provided to their children will not only increase trust in child care centers and its employees but the children will benefit significantly. The heightened security in the drop-off and pick-up processes will decrease child abduction and video cameras will allow parents to bring something to a day care providers attention that may have otherwise been missed.

Published on:

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In McCormick, South Carolina, a family and community are mourning the tragic and most unexpected death of a 9 year old girl. It was reported that Kristen Dutton was attacked by an Akita dog that was purchased just three weeks before the incident by the girl’s grandfather. The Japanese Akita was quite a large dog and weighed in at 98 pounds. The dog bit the girl in the neck and she died from these dog bite related personal injuries at a local hospital. The incident took place outside when Kristen was alone with the dog. It was reported that the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control would pick up the dog to euthanize it. See South Carolina Girl Killed by Dog at Grandfather’s Home.

Whether a dog is a family pet or a stray one, dog attacks continue to take place in South Carolina and other States. Some attacks are unpredictable in that the dog had no prior history of aggression or dog bites while others incidents involve a dog with a history of prior attacks. It should be kept in mind by all dog owners, parents, and child care providers that dogs are unpredictable and attack (at times) for no apparent reason or cause.

Dealing with a dog bite attack can be most difficult for the family of the injured child. The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know has a chapter on dog bites and also has information on other related topics like Medical Bills and Treatment, Damages / Compensation, and Homeowner’s Insurance. You can receive a free copy of this book by clicking here.

Published on:

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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In Rock Hill, South Carolina, the death of a 6 week old child in a crowded Rock Hill day care center made news recently. As expected, an autopsy was performed in order to determine the cause of death. According to the medical examiner, the child died as a result of positional asphyxiation. This medical term refers to medical complication caused when a person’s position prevents the person from breathing adequately. See Baby Died Of Natural Causes In Crowded South Carolina Day Care Center. It has been reported that even star athletes have died as a result of position asphyxiation. See Wikipedia Positional Asphyxiation. It is believed that the baby was faced down in the crib by the owner of the day care center.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has recommended that parents and child care providers have babies sleep on their backs. This recommendation has been in place since 1992. Studies indicate that the SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) has been reduced with this simple technique or habit of having babies sleep on their backs. See Recommended Sleeping Position for Infants.