We all want to keep our children safe and secure, especially when enjoying healthy sports. Using the right type of helmet is a great start. Taking part in sports is an important part of a healthy lifestyle for kids. But injuries can, and do, occur. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 2.6 million children 0-19 years old are treated in the emergency department each year for sports and recreation-related injuries. See CDC article.
Here are some great tips from the CDC:
Gear up. When children are active in sports, make sure they use the right protective gear for their activity, such as helmets, wrist guards, knee or elbow pads.
Use the right stuff. Be sure that helmets are in good condition and worn correctly all the time. Poorly fitting equipment may be uncomfortable and may not offer the best protection. Be sure to get the right helmet for that particular sport as well.
Be a good role model. Communicate positive safety messages and serve as a model of safe behavior, including wearing a helmet and following the rules. Parents, use a helmet yourself and show your kid how it’s done!
Bicycle helmets are especially important.
As reported by the New York Times in June of 2013, bike accidents contribute to more sports-related head injuries than any other sports activity. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported that about half of the 500,000 bicycle-related emergency room injuries in 2007 involved children under the age of 16. See CPSC back to school safety tips. These incidents can and do result in child deaths and permanent injury, especially when the child is not wearing a helmet. According to the New York Times piece, about 90 percent of bicyclists killed in the United States in 2009 were not wearing a helmet.
Each year, the Rhode Island personal injury lawyers at Decof, Decof & Barry support the annual efforts by the Rhode Island Association for Justice (“RIAJ”) to protect kids. RIAJ’s program accepts donations from lawyers and law firms, and then purchases new bicycle helmets for schoolchildren with the proceeds. The safety helmets are distributed to needy children at area schools each spring.