We are three days into The American Public Health Association’s 6th annual National Public Health Week. With these week-long efforts to educate the public about wellness issues, the APHA aims to make America the “healthiest nation in one generation.”
The theme of this year’s Health Week, “Safety is NO Accident,” encourages communities all over the country to focus especially on personal injury preparation and avoidance.
The broad topic of injury avoidance reminds us of many issues personal injury lawyers help clients deal with everyday. We’ve written about many of them here on the Ask Gordon Now Personal Injury Accident Blog. As we know from our many blog entries, personal injuries can happen to anyone, anywhere and at anytime. Some specific safety issues the APHA wants to address with this year’s program include:
Automobile-Related Personal Injuries
- One pedestrian is injured in a traffic crash every eight minutes.
- In 2008, nearly 20% of all vehicle crashes were caused by distracted driving.
Personal Injuries at Work
- About 200 workers in the United States are hospitalized because of a work injury every day.
- Homicide is the 4th leading cause of fatal workplace injuries in the retail, health care and social service industries.
Children and Personal Injuries
- Falls account for about 80% of all playground injuries.
- Only 9% of playgrounds in the U.S. have signs to indicate appropriate ages for the play equipment.
Personal Injuries at Home
- Only 39% of homes with both firearms and kids keep their firearms locked and unloaded.
- A working fire alarm reduces the risk of death due to house fire by 50%.
All of the statistics above could be changed for the better through automobile driver, parent or workplace manager education and encouragement.
When behind the wheel of an automobile, every driver should pay full attention to the task at hand: driving. Making phone calls, texting, eating, tending to the kids, fiddling with the radio or entering details into the GPS are all distractions. Each task can wait until the vehicle is stopped.
At work, personal injury prevention starts with supervisors who follow laws outlined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, provide safety gear for their employees, stand up against workplace bullying.
Children certainly seem like magnets for personal injuries, but playground injuries can be reduced if parents and other adults on watch guide kids towards safe play habits and keep an eye out for potentially dangerous equipment that needs removal or repair.
Last, but certainly not least, personal injuries often happen in the home because we feel safe and let our guards down where we’re most comfortable. The danger at home, though, is complacency. When kids, friends or elder family members are around, whether sometimes or all of the time, safety should be of high importance. It takes just a split-second for a house fire or firearm to cause a lifetime of physical or emotional pain. A smoke alarm and a gun lock are all it costs for a long-lived safe and happy home.
See how just a few minutes–or even a few seconds–of safety preparation and conscientiousness can combat the dreadful statistics above? Lowering the number of personal injuries in the U.S. starts with just one thoughtful person at a time, and if everybody works hard to be safety conscious, personal injury lawyers could eventually be out of business! Until that happens, though, Heuser & Heuser are here to help you make your accident settlement claim.