Summertime Is Trauma Season

  • June 6, 2017
  • Personal Injury

You may have heard about the “100 Deadliest Days,” when deaths from crashes involving teens increase. But did you know that summer is also when trauma is most likely to occur? Emergency rooms consider summer “the trauma season”—it’s their own 100 Deadliest Days. The situation is especially true for those whose have been penned up in classrooms for months—in other words, kids. More time outdoors, often unsupervised, generally means more injuries.

“The first thing that lets us know [trauma season is near] is when we turn the clock ahead,” said Barbara Gaines, a trauma surgeon at Pittsburgh’s Children’s Hospital. Kids have “an extra hour or two in the evening to play.”

That means, starting in April, people in ERs and surgeons see more bicycle injuries. In May and June, it turns into more swimming, lawn mower, and other traumatic injuries. At Pittsburgh’s Children’s Hospital, the numbers spike from 100 traumatic injuries of children per month to 170 to 200 from May to September. The numbers of adult trauma cases also rise by roughly 30 percent.

Many of the accidents aren’t life-threatening. Even so, many are preventable, and who doesn’t want to prevent their child from experiencing pain and fear?

The Most Likely Accident-Causers

The weather often has us enjoying the outdoors many different ways during the summer. While summertime can be fun time, it also opens up new ways to injure ourselves. Here are some of the top accident-causers during the hot weather:

  • Injuries to extremities (such as wrist fractures) and to the head occur most often.
  • Lawn mowers. It’s important to watch out for rocks or other items that could become projectiles. Also, don’t wear sandals or mow on steep grades.
  • Swimming pools and water activities. Be extremely careful when diving, and limit horsing around and running in pool areas. Don’t leave kids alone in the water.
  • ATVs/dirt bikes. Rollovers on ATVs, and injuries from performing jumps and going at high speeds on dirt bikes, are all too common.
  • Motorcycles. Exercise caution and common sense—you know the drill—and always wear an approved helmet.
  • One kid on a trampoline can fly off and sustain injuries. More than one child jumping at the same time can cause multiple instances of trauma from slamming into each other or even knocking each other off the trampoline.
  • Skateboards/swing sets/playground activities. All of these can result in sprains, contusions, and broken bones.
  • Amusement park rides. Obey the rules and listen to any restrictions or warnings that staff may convey to you.
  • The frequency of intentional violence goes up when the mercury in the thermometer does, but remember that kids can get into trouble with BB guns, air rifles, and paintball guns.
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Suggestions for Avoiding ER Visits This Summer

A little common sense can go a long way when it comes to preventing injury:

  • Always wear a helmet when it’s appropriate, such as on a bike, motorcycle, ATV, and so on.
  • Always wear your seatbelt. Babies and toddlers should be in a safety seat while older children should sit in a booster seat until approximately 10 years of age.
  • Don’t mix alcohol with your fun.
  • Don’t leave kids alone around or in pools, or around grills, firepits, and fireworks. (All fireworks, including sparklers, are illegal in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties and in Baltimore City. A limited number of hand-held items such as sparklers are legal in Baltimore County and certain other Maryland counties.)
  • Wear the proper safety equipment when mowing, and keep children well clear of machinery. Mowers aren’t toys to ride on.

We wish you much enjoyment with friends and family this summer!

We’re listening. How can we help?

At the Law Offices of Steven H. Heisler, we will fight for you both in and out of court, and always seek fair treatment for you. Steve has devoted his practice to defending the rights of personal injury victims and knows how traumatic a serious accident can be for both the injured person and for his or her family. It can be especially troubling when a child sustains an injury. If you or a loved one was seriously harmed, you may be entitled to various kinds of financial compensation, such as medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Keep in mind, however, that there is a statute of limitations – or a time limit – for filing personal injury claims. If you have been injured in an accident, you should not delay. Contact Steve today for a free initial consultation by calling 1-410-625-4878, or by using our online form.