Do Not Under Estimate the Damage Caused by Dog Attacks To Children

Dogs have been long labelled as a man’s best friend. Children love playing with their pet dogs, and are constantly left with dogs unsupervised. This has become quite a hazardous choice nowadays, as the breeds of dog people are choosing to keep as pets nowadays have become increasingly of the dangerous kind. Japanese Akita, Pit Bull and Rottweiler are common breeds of dogs that are kept as pets and have been known to attack young children and cause serious injuries.

Physical and Psychological Effects
The injuries young children sustain have long lasting effects, both physical and psychological. When we hear about dog bites, we tend to think of minor injuries such as a small bite on the arm, or a cut on the leg. However, in reality, the damage caused by dog attacks is underestimated.

In Newbold, Derbyshire, a three-year old boy needed 100 stitches to mend a bite on his face caused by a Japanese Akita. Another child in Boynton Beach, Florida, required three surgeries after an attack by a Pit Bull. These injuries are serious and children have to suffer devastating consequences due to these attacks.

The physical injuries may eventually heal, but the psychological and emotional trauma a child feels may never go away. The attack can instill a new set of fears for the child, and every time the child sees a dog or a similar animal, they will be frightened, and memories of the attack may resurface.

Psychological Effects are underestimated
Adults overlook these emotional side effects of dog attacks. This can be due to the fact that with adults and older children, the emotional effects may not be as devastating. Older children and adults are able to discuss their feelings and the incident easily with others, they may even brag about it. With younger children, the experience scars them for life, and with some sensitive children, talking about the experience proves to be very difficult.

PTSD and Dog Attacks
Young children are also more at risk of suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Thus, it is very important for parents and physicians to assess a dog bite victim both physically and mentally. Parents should be on the lookout for any possible signs of PTSD, such as:

Sleep issues
Changes in appetite
Severe behavioral issues
Parents should encourage their child to talk about their traumatic experience, but if the child is having difficulty doing so, a visit to a pediatric psychologist may be advisable.

The three-year-old boy who had been maimed by the Japanese Akita asked his mother, if he was ‘still cute’. This proves that children see themselves differently after the attack. They know they have changed in some way, and even if they cannot comprehend the extent, of which they have.

When someone suffers from a dog attack, the damage done can usually be underestimated, especially if the physical injuries are small or minor. Dog bites are more likely to occur with children than with any other age group. With children, this is particularly true, as they may be afraid to recount details of their attack and will keep much of their fear inside.

Here are some references parents may find useful related to childhood dog attacks:

What Needs To Be Proved In Order To Win A Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit?

What is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a disorder that usually occurs during pregnancy or during childbirth. Lack of oxygen to the brain causes brain damage to areas of the brain that regulate muscle movement. The lack of oxygen can occur due to a number of factors, and in some cases, it can be the fault of the medical team during the time of delivery.

Cerebral palsy is a difficult condition to live with for children. They will never be able to live as other children, play openly, nor will they be as free as other children will. Parents also have a difficult time giving their child adequate care and must supervise their child at all times. This can be stressful for parents and on any of the other children in the household.

Malpractice of the Medical Team
When cerebral palsy is considered the fault of the doctors or the medical team on staff, a birth injury lawsuit is required to investigate further in detail exactly what occurred and who was at fault. Many mistakes can be made by the medical team that can cause the brain to receive inadequate amounts of oxygen.

If the umbilical cord is wrapped around the neck, they may take too long to remove it, causing a severe lack of oxygen to the brain.
If the delivery takes too long, and if the baby is stuck in the birth canal, there will be a lack of oxygen to the brain.
If the doctors use any instrument to help deliver the baby, they may cause brain trauma.
If the doctor’s do not act quickly enough to perform an emergency caesarean section which can result in the baby not receiving enough oxygen.
Filing a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit
If a parent believes that the disorder their infant now has to live with for the rest of their lives is due to the mistakes of their medical team, they can file a cerebral palsy lawsuit against the doctors. Although nothing will ever compensate for the losses of the parents and the child, a compensation package can help the child receive the best care and also help parents try to give their child the best they can.

Many legal factors must be taken into account when filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit. The parents must consult with an experienced attorney before they begin. Proving medical malpractice can be a difficult task, and an attorney will know where to start and who to question.

There is also a time limit, called the statute of limitations, which gives the parent a certain amount of time they have to file a cerebral palsy lawsuit. An attorney will discuss all the details with the parents and will inform them if they are eligible to file a lawsuit.

What needs to be proven?
The most important part of filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit is to be able to prove your case. Here is a list of the criteria that must be proven to win a cerebral lawsuit.

The parents must be able to prove that the doctor or medical staff (the defendant) had a ‘duty of care’ for your infant.
The parents must also prove that due to the doctor or medical staff’s mistakes, their child suffered brain trauma that caused cerebral palsy.
There must be an ‘expert testimony’ given by a medical professional who will testify that the information regarding the cause of cerebral palsy is correct.
The parents must also list what damages or losses were caused by the defendant’s negligence. These can include the cost of medical care, pain and suffering or even disability.
Here are some useful references concerning cerebral palsy litigation:

Trampoline Fun Probably Not Worth the Risk of Serious Injury

Kids love jumping around at home, be it on the bed, on sofas, or on the backyard trampoline. We love seeing our children happy and enjoying life, but we should also be aware of any risks or dangers that these enjoyments may cause.

Trampolines are dangerous for kids to play on, with and definitely without parent supervision. The following is some information regarding the risks of trampolines.

Discouraged by Pediatrics
In 2007, the Canadian Pediatric Society emphasized that they did not support the use of trampolines, especially the ones we set up in our backyard. Recreational trampolines found in parks or other facilities also pose a danger to your children. In 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released a statement strongly discouraging the use of trampolines at home.

The Risks
Trampolines are most dangerous for young children who do not have full control over their body. When they are jumping on the trampoline, they may not be able to balance themselves properly and will fall at odd angles.
Jumping on a trampoline is usually not a one-person job. Many children are involved and the trampolines are usually too small to safely accommodate the number of children at the same time. Children may hit or fall on each other.
With younger children, their heads encompass a larger surface area, and so the chances of them landing on their heads rather than on their arms or legs are more likely.
Trampoline injuries can be minor such as a broken wrist or a sprained ankle, but many of the injuries are more severe. Head and neck injuries may also occur, and according to a 2000 US study, 1 of 200 trampoline injuries result in permanent brain damage.
The Benefits
Listing the benefits is not going to make a difference after being given the information about the risks. To make you better understand how minute trampoline fun is though, here are a few of the benefits.

Children have fun on trampolines, as it is a completely different experience of being in the air.
Gives children a chance to get out and play, taking them away from their inside routine of television and computers.
It is a form of exercise and exerts the limbs and lungs.
These benefits pale in comparison to the risks. Benefits have been listed only for parents and guardians to understand that trampolines are a hazard, not a toy. All of these benefits can be found in other activities, safer activities that are better for your child. Children can play at the park, go biking or swimming. Activities that do not have a high risk of injury should be encouraged with your children.

Trampolines are dangerous for children, even under parental supervision. It only takes an instant for someone to land on the wrong part of their body and for injuries to occur. Trampolines are definitely not worth the risk, and no matter how hard your child pleads with you to set one up in the backyard, remember that the risks greatly outweigh the benefits.


How Was A House Painter Awarded $58 Million After Losing Half His Skull in a Bar Room Beating?

By attorney Jon Rosenfeld – I am always culling the news stations to learn about strange, or unusual cases involving negligence. This is a very intriguing story about a fellow who was seriously harmed in a bar room brawl.

House painter Antonio Lopez Chaj, age 43 sustained severe brain damage that resulted in the loss of half of his skull and the inability to speak, has been awarded $58 million dollars by a jury. At a news conference Chaj and his attorneys stated that there was an award against a security company in Torrance Superior Court.

According to Chaj’s attorneys this is one of the largest settlements in ever awarded in California and they expect the security company to appeal the award. His lawyers said that before he ever receives any of the awarded compensation there may have to be settlement negotiations with the company.

Attorney Federico Sayre stated that Chaj was attacked when he was attempting to stop an attack on two of his relatives by a bartender and bouncer at a Wilshire bar. The security guard who was untrained and unlicensed beat Chaj, using a baton and then kicking him once he was down on the ground in the head eight times. The security guard then smashed Chaj’s skull against pavement outside of the bar four times. The security guard identified as Emerson Quintanilla and the bartender who was the manager disappeared Sayre said. The attorney said that Quintanilla should not have been working and believes that it was an assault akin to road rage.

According to Sayre the altercation took place on April 20, 2010 at a neighborhood bar the Barra Latina, where Chaj, this brother and two nephews. This is when one of Chaj relatives was involved in a confrontation with the bartender/ manager who then used brass knuckles on the individual
When Chaj attempted to break up the altercation, by saying “stop beating my nephews.” Sayre said this is when the security guard then turned and beat Chaj unconscious.

How Did He Get So Much Money?
Many people would say, “hey, this is unfair that the victim got so much, how could a painter get that”. The tort reformers would definitely say this is an example of an out of control award. But there is a formula and method to this madness. Don’t forget that Chaj was transported to the hospital, with part of his skull missing. While the doctors were able to save his life, he sustained severe brain damage. Sayre said Chaj now requires 24 hour nursing care and is unable to speak. He will also face more surgeries.

This means in addition to his pain and suffering, his medical bills and lifetime nursing care will add up. In fact, the jury would determine how much money he would lose over his lifetime in lost wages, costs of hiring assistants and a live in nurse, surgeries, etc. These are called economic damages. Then they would also determine a value for past, present and future pain and suffering.

Typically a judge can move to perform an additur , or remittitur to to add more, or subtract from an “out of control award”, for example Tort reformers don’t want judges and juries to decide awards. They [tortfeasors and their friends] want to be able to put a fixed amount that you or a loved one can recover, so it can then be a cost of doing business. In other words, they want “being held accountable” to be a fixed cost.

However, in the case at bar, it is possible that a higher court could send the case back with instructions to reduce or add more, or reverse the verdict, based upon a procedural or substantive issue of law. We will be watching the case closely and will update you accordingly.

Citations and Sources:
The Ehline Law Firm PC personal blog
Joint Committee Report on California Damages

Seating Position For Children In Cars (Yes, it does matter)

Motor vehicle accidents involving young children are dangerously increasing. The injuries that children sustain in such accidents are one of the leading causes of death of children in the US. Car accidents can be prevented, and with the correct child safety measures used, so can injuries.

Types of Restraints
For babies, aged 0 – 18 months, there is no other option than a car safety seat, which in some countries is mandatory. For children 18 months to 2 ½ years, a larger car safety seat can be used, and as the toddlers age, booster seats can be fitted into the car accordingly.

Once the child is old enough to sit without a seat, usually by age 4-5, the regular seat belt is considered efficient.

In a 2010 study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the US, it was found that children in safety seats were at less of a risk of sustaining incapacitating injuries in a car crash. Unrestrained children were eight times more likely to suffer incapacitating injuries than children who were restrained. Children who are positioned securely in their appropriate safety seats have a much lower risk of serious or fatal injuries.

Safe Seating Positions
Although the restraints help in preventing serious injuries, seating positions also play an imperative role in car accidents. The same 2010 study indicated that children who were sitting in the front were twice more likely to sustain incapacitating injuries than children who were seated in the rear or second row.

The American Association of Pediatrics stated in 2008 that the safest spot for a child seat was to be positioned in the center of the rear seats. It was also stated that children under the age of three who were seated in the center of the back seat had a 43% lower chance of injury compared to children seated on the outer sides of the rear seats.

Keeping Your Child Safe and Secure in the Car
The best place to have your child sit is in the rear, with a restraint system intact. For older children, parents must make sure that their child securely fastened their seat belt before the car begins moving. A seat belt cannot be too loose or too tight, and it is the parent’s responsibility that they ensure the seat belt is properly tightened.

For younger children, the safest spot is in the middle of the rear seats, in a car safety seat. The belt in the safety seat must also be securely fastened before travel. Parents much check that the child is comfortable in the seat and is not able to open the seat belt at any time.

Safety positions are very important for children. Sometimes we are unable to prevent a car accident from happening, but keeping our children safe is possible. Proper usage of car restraints and seating positions will help prevent any serious or fatal injuries from occurring. Children are very fragile and can be injured quite severely in a car accident. It is up to the parents to ensure their safety to the best of their ability.

Useful References for child car safety:

Don’t Be Hesitant To Ask About Day Care Operators License

Working parents want the best care for their children, someone who will take care of them as well as themselves. Sometimes, if they are lucky, they have the option of leaving their kids with grandparents or aunts and uncles, family they trust will take the best care of their children.

However, sometimes a parent will have to leave their child at a day care. With the incidents that have been occurring all over the world regarding day care and nanny neglect, this can be a frightening task. How do you trust a complete stranger with your most precious pieces of art?

Licensed Day Care Operators
Licensed day care operators are part of a group of professional operators who have timely safety and health inspections regulated by the government. They fulfill certain requirements of the government and are licensed to operate as a home or business day care.

The residential day care next door may be cheaper and convenient for you, but it is not a safe option. Even though you think your neighbor is the best and takes care of your children from time to time, leaving them as the sole guardian of your children is not a good idea. Unlicensed day care operators have no professional training, no inspections and are not forced to create safety standards in their home.

Some tips on choosing a safe day care
It is better to be safe than sorry.

Paying more for a licensed daycare may not seem too appealing to you at the time, but it is the best thing you can do for your children.
Make sure you check out the facility yourself and do not hesitate to ask them to look at a copy of their operator’s license. Most daycare facilities will show you it right away.
Inspect the house or facility yourself. As a parent, anything that does not look right or safe to you should be pointed out right away. Ask about any pets or animals they may keep, and make a point to meet each of the staff members.
A regulated day care should also have a dated health and safety inspection sheet on hand. Again, do not hesitate to ask for a look. Make sure you know what you are reading. If you have any questions, your local health and safety office may have more resources for you to take a look at.
Ask around the neighborhood of the day care regarding the people and the staff. Meet with other parents and children who use the day care facility you are considering. If they have any issues, check them out for yourself. Even if they do not have any issues, remember every child is different, and they need to be able to accommodate your child’s needs.
Once you have chosen a day care, make a point to visit once in a while. Keep in touch with day care staff, and make sure everyone has all of your contact numbers. If your child is old enough, ask them questions about the facility. If you notice any changes in your child’s behavior, you need to investigate further right away.
References concerning day care safety:

What Is the Real Risk for a Child Sustaining An Incapacitating Injury in a Car Accident?

Injuries sustained in a car accident can be both physically and psychologically traumatic for a child. If the child luckily comes through the accident with minimal injuries, they may still suffer from psychological trauma. In severe accidents, children may suffer incapacitating injuries that can change their entire lives forever.

Incapacitating Car Accident Injuries Involving Children
Incapacitating injuries are classified as injuries that disable a person to such a degree that they are unable to function normally as they did before their injury. This can include difficulties in walking, talking, and eating normally due to injuries such as lacerations, broken bones, or head and abdominal injuries. Incapacitating injuries can have long-term effects that can make life quite stressful for both parents and the injured child.

Children are at a high risk of sustaining incapacitating injuries in a car accident. In a 2010 study conducted by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it was found that using child safety seats for children aged three and under reduced the risk of incapacitating injuries considerably. In the study sample analyzed, it was concluded that 8% of children aged seven and under who were not using any sort of restraining device suffered incapacitating injuries. This is compared to only 1% of children aged seven and under who were using restraining devices that suffered incapacitating injuries.

Type of Car Accident & Impact On Child’s Injury
The use of restraining devices such as car seats and seat belts has an impact on the severity and risk of incapacitating injuries in children. The type of car accident also affects the risk of such injuries from occurring.

In the same 2010 study conducted in the US, it was found that the incapacitating injuries occurred the most in rollover crashes. In rollover crashes, the car is impacted from all sides, thus affecting everyone in the car at almost every angle. If the child was not restrained in the rollover crash, they were at a much higher risk of sustaining incapacitating injuries. 26% of unrestrained children suffered incapacitating injuries, while only 9 – 10% of restrained children sustained the same injuries.

In car accidents that involved side or rear impact, the risk of unrestrained children sustaining injuries again was much higher than restrained children (8 % and 1 % respectively).

Restraining Devices For Minors
According to these results, incapacitating injuries can be prevented or at the least minimized by using age appropriate restraint devices such as safety car seats or seat belts. Children who were restrained either by car seats or seat belts had much less of a risk of suffering incapacitating injuries than unrestrained children. There are age appropriate restraints that must be used for children, and it is the parents’ responsibility to ensure that their child is safely secured in the vehicle before traveling.

The 2010 study has made it very clear about the real risk of children sustaining incapacitating injuries in car accidents. We cannot control the type or extremity of a car accident, but we can control how safe we keep our children. Thus, it is very important that parents take all safety measures very seriously to ensure the safety of their children.

Some Useful References Regarding Children In Motor Vehicle Collisions:

Should ‘Heading’ Be Removed From Children’s Soccer Leagues?

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, brain trauma caused by sports has increased about 60% in the last decade. Concussions are common injuries sustained by children when they are playing their favorite sport, but this does not make it okay. Any game involving a ball has the potential to hurt a child severely. If this can be prevented, it should be done so in all possible cases.

Heading in Soccer Games
A specific concern parents have regarding sport related injuries are those game practices, which purposefully involve head and ball contact. One such practice is ‘heading’ in soccer leagues. In soccer, only the use of the feet is allowed, and anything above the neck, such as your head, and many children are apt to try this ‘cool’ idea out.

When our children were young and they would fall off the bed or out of the chair, we would be worried about any lasting effects. Why not worry now, when they are repeatedly being put in danger’s way when heading the ball in soccer games? It is an unnecessary addition to an already fun game. Heading is not required to make soccer fun or different, and if such a need does exist, there are many other ways coaches and players can elicit fun activities.

Although our children’s heads are very strong, repetitive injury or ball to head action can cause mental impairment in the long run, according to a US study. More research is required to fully understand the potential effects, but there is currently evidence, which supports the notion of head injury.

How Parents Can Help
Parents can help children understand the issues related to heading and explain to them that no matter how ‘cool’ it is, the effects of the pain can be long lasting. This might be a bit harsh for children, but we need to keep them safe.

How Coaches Can Help
If the team is not encouraged to use their heads, they will not. Children look up to their coaches and will listen to the advice they provide. Coaches should emphasize that the best goals are made with the feet. If other team players are not practicing heading, your child will be sure not to either.

Media Influence
Due to the rage of the FIFA World Cup and star soccer players such as David Beckham, the love of soccer has increased amongst many children. The media depicts the difficult soccer techniques these professional players use when playing, and children are amazed and motivated to do the same. They will attempt to try these out, and though some of them can be done with practice and supervision, parents must always be supervising any such activity.

Heading is unnecessary in soccer games, and due to the potential risks, needs to be eliminated from children’s soccer leagues. Technically, there are no advantages or benefits of heading the ball rather than kicking it with the feet. Therefore, the risks and disadvantages involved with heading make it clear that this practice should be removed from the children’s soccer leagues and be discouraged amongst all children.


Children May Require Extensive Surgery to Correct Problems Left from Dog Bites

Dog bite victims are most commonly young children, because they are unable to defend themselves effectively against larger dogs. Injuries sustained by children can vary, from minor cuts and scratches to more severe injuries that can require surgeries and sometimes may even lead to death.

Some examples of severe dog attack injuries
If a , the injuries can be so severe that extensive surgery is needed to correct the problem. In July 2012, an 8-year-old boy from Gladstone, Oregon needed surgery after being bitten by a dog in the calf. In November 2012, a young toddler aged 2 was bitten by a pit bull and three surgeries were required to help her recover from the bites. A ten year old was bitten so viciously by her own dog that doctors had to cut off her foot and a lower portion of her leg.

These are but a few examples of the substantial injuries children suffer due to dog bites. Many of the bites that children sustain are not minor, and due to the aggressive nature of the dogs, are injuries that require extensive surgery. The main areas that are attacked are the face and the lower portion of the body, beneath the waist. With younger children, the risk of infection is great, and if surgery is needed, it must be done so immediately to minimize the risk of scars.

A long recovery process
The surgery itself can be a traumatic experience for a child. The recovery process can be long and arduous and the child may need to stay in the hospital during this time. The child’s entire life is disrupted due to the effects of the dog bite.

Some injuries may require multiple surgeries, and when the injury occurs in the face, these surgeries take a lot of time to heal. The time spent between surgeries can be at home or at the hospital. Depending on the child’s age, they may have to miss a lot of school, and miss time with friends and family. Parents need to be prepared for a long and tough recovery process.

How to stay safe? What parents can do?
There are many things parents can do to help prevent serious injuries from dog bites. Supervision is the key. A child must always be under a parent or guardian’s supervision. Even when a child is playing in their own backyard, supervision is needed, especially if there are any dogs in the neighborhood. Parents should also teach their children to stay away from dogs they do not know or have not interacted with before. Although even known dogs may attack children, it is more likely for a strange dog to attack a child it has never seen before.

What owners can do?
Owners are most often blamed in dog attack incidents. A dog should not be left unleashed, especially if it has a habit of biting or attacking people. An owner should be aware of their dog’s location at all times, and should be supervising the dog’s behavior. If an owner is around during an attack, the dog is more likely to listen to the owner’s commands and stop.

Dog bites can be prevented, if both parents and owners remain responsible. It is very important to uphold these responsibilities to ensure that children are kept safe from dangerous dogs. It can be a matter of life and death.

Dog bite resources:`lost-foot-dog-attack.html#ixzz2MphG1Y6l

Drivers Need To Pay Attention and Obey the Law When Children Exit School Buses

Accidents are preventable, and especially when drivers pay attention to what is going on around them. The slightest distraction can cause great damage. An important time for drivers to be on the lookout and extra careful is during the early morning when children are going to school, and in the late afternoon, when children are returning from school.

Yellow School Buses
School buses have been painted yellow for particular reasons. They are easy to spot and and identify as school buses. Some schools may use public transport busses for older children. Regardless of the type of bus, drivers need to proceed with extra caution when children are entering or exiting a school bus.

Buses are equipped with proper indicator and stop arms that give the drivers some time to realize that they must slow down, or that the bus is slowing down to pick up children. When the stop arm of a school bus is out, a car cannot overtake the bus and must remain behind the bus at all times during the red lights are flashing.

Children can also run from one side of the road to the other to get on or off the bus. They might drop a school bag or forget something and turn around. Their actions are quite unpredictable and during this time, it is best to stop your car, and wait patiently for the children to board the bus.

There are strict laws that have been implemented to keep our children safe, and drivers must obey these laws. Speed limits, adhering to bus rules, and driving cautiously during the specified hours are just a few of the laws that are simple to follow yet have the ability to prevent great accidents. Drivers must be aware that these laws are very important to follow, and disregarding any of these laws is a serious offense.

How Parents and Children Can Help
Parents can help by advising their children to be careful when crossing the road and to always watch for cars in both directions. For younger children, this is sometimes hard to remember when they are more worried about their first day of school. Parents can supervise the children as they get on and off the buses.

How Drivers Can Help Reduce The Incidence of School Bus Accidents
In school zones and residential areas, drivers must drive slowly, regardless of if they see a school bus or not. Drivers must be alert at all times, especially during the time before school and after school.

Drivers should also know exactly what the bus indicators mean. Yellow flashing lights at the back of the school bus mean that the bus is about to stop, while red flashing lights mean that the bus has stopped and children are boarding or exiting. Some buses may use a stop arm as well in addition to the red flashing lights. It is against the law to overtake or pass a bus that has red flashing lights or a stop arm extended.

Drivers must understand that this is not a simple matter, and no matter what kind of rush they are in, they must stop for the children. Our children are our future, we must work together to take care of them.

School Bus Safety Information: