Product Liability - Written by Beasley Allen on Thursday, February 9, 2012 7:46 - 0 Comments
Few safety-related decisions a parent can make are more important than the decision to place their child in a child safety seat when that child is a passenger in a motor vehicle. But the seat must be properly chosen and then must be used correctly. The statistics can’t be ignored, and they show that an infant in a proper child safety seat has 71% less likelihood of receiving a fatal injury in a vehicle crash. A toddler’s chances of survival increase by more than half (54%). There is really no reason why a child shouldn’t be placed in a child safety seat. When riding in a vehicle I strongly recommend all that parents use them for their children. These seats are provided to protect the children and must be designed properly. They must also be used properly.
Most child seats are never called upon to provide safety to the children they were designed to protect and serve only as seats for a child to sit in while riding in a vehicle. But the real purpose of a child safety seat is to protect children. Unfortunately, some child seats fail in the one task they were designed to perform and that is to protect children.
What are some signs that a safety seat may have failed in a collision? If a child in a child safety seat is seriously injured or killed in a wreck and not others in the vehicle, that is a sure sign of a problem. Many times the child safety seat fails, breaks or detaches from its base. In such cases, the seats should be inspected by an expert to determine how it performed.
A child safety seat can be to blame in a side impact if the child is unexplainably seriously injured or killed. Also, a child safety seat can be the cause of paralysis in children in certain scenarios, especially when children are sitting in booster seats. The problems with car seats are extensive. A car seat may not be designed to be compatible with the vehicle in which it is used. In such a case the seat can’t be properly tightened in the vehicle. Fortunately, car installed latches and top tethers have lessened incompatibility issues.
Older car seats with overhead shields present can cause serious injuries from head contact to the shield. Fortunately, these seats haven’t been manufactured since the early 2000s and that’s a good thing. Many safety experts believe that car safety seats should employ a five-point harness. Five-point harnesses are by far the safest restraint and can easily be placed in a child safety seat. Until that happens, there will continue to be safety problems with safety seats for children.
Finally, it should be noted that structural failures are not uncommon. Components needed to properly restrain the occupants can break, or the seat itself can become detached, and such incidents can cause serious injuries and even the death of a child. If you have any questions about child safety seats, contact Chris Glover, a lawyer in our firm, by calling 800-898-2034 or by email at Chris.Glover@beasleyallen.com. Chris has successfully handled a number of cases involving defective child safety seats.
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