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recalled car seatsGraco Corporation, one of the largest manufacturers of baby and child products, has issued a recall for 11 different models of baby strollers because of reports the products may cause a fingertip amputation hazard. According to an announcement on the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) website, the folding hinge, which is located on the side of the stroller, can pinch a baby or small child’s finger, which may result in a laceration or amputation of the child’s finger. Graco has received at least 11 different complaints from consumers where children were injured. Six of those victims had their full fingertip amputated in the incidents, four children received a partial-fingertip amputation injury, and one child received a serious fingertip laceration. The company warns parents and other caregivers, when opening a stroller, to make sure the side hinge has completely locked in place before placing the child in it. The strollers being recalled were manufactured under the Graco and Century names, and were manufactured between 2000 through 2014. The model names the company says which have the defective hinge are:
  • Aspen;
  • Breeze;
  • Capri;
  • Cirrus;
  • Glider;
  • Kite;
  • LiteRider;
  • Sierra;
  • Solara;
  • Sterling; and
  • TravelMate.
Graco estimates that the recall affects approximately 5 million units which were sold in the U.S., 200,000 sold in Canda, and 10,000 units sold in Mexico. Consumers can contact Graco for a free hinge repair kit. Graco has had to issue several recalls this past year. In March, the company was forced to recall over four million car seats and in July another recall was issued for almost two million infant car seats. In both recalls, there was a danger presented to children from the buckles of the harness of the seat becoming stuck and parents unable to remove their child. If your child has been injured in an accident involving a defective product, contact an experienced New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the product’s manufacturer.
child safety seatEven before the moment a newborn baby leaves the hospital, most parents have spent a good deal of time researching their purchase for a child safety seat. Many police departments offer child seat safety checks where parents can make sure the seat they are using is installed correctly in order to keep their child safe and protected in the event of an auto accident. Additionally, hospitals will not release an infant until they verify the baby will be put into a safety seat. As a child gets bigger and outgrows safety seats, parents are advised to use booster seats because, although the child is too big for a car seat, they have not grown enough to use vehicle adult safety belts safely. Yet a recent study shows that many parents overlook those safety issues and take away those booster seats before the child is big enough. Safe Kids Worldwide conducted an online survey of parents who had booster seat aged children. An incredible 90 percent of parents admitted to removing the booster seat before their child was big enough for the seat belts. Additionally, 70 percent of parents who had children between the ages of four and 10 years old did not know that a child needs to be a minimum of 4 feet 9 inches tall in order to use an adult safety belt alone. The reasons most parents gave for not using the booster seats had nothing to do with the height and weight of the child, but instead included answers such as the comfort of the child, the other parent’s opinion or state law. In Texas, all children under the age of 8 years old must be in a booster seat unless they are 4 feet nine inches or taller. However, safety advocates recommend that even if a child is of legal age, unless they have met the minimum height requirement and weigh between 80 to 100 pounds, they should remain in a booster seat. If your child has been injured in a car accident, contact an experienced New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the at-fault driver.
bean bag chair recallThe U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently announced a recall of over 2 million bean bag chairs after reports that two children have died in separate incidents. According to the recall announcement, the zippers on the chairs are able to be easily opened by children, allowing them to crawl inside the chair. Once inside, a child can become trapped, choke or suffocate on the small foam beads that are in the bean bag chair. Both of the children who died had reportedly opened the zippers of the bags and crawled inside. Each of the children suffocated inside the chair from lack of air and inhaling the beads. One victim from McKinney, Texas was a 13-year-old boy and the other victim was a 3-year-old girl from Lexington, Kentucky. Both of the victims’ bodies were discovered inside the zippered chairs. There is no mandatory standard for bean bag chairs, only a voluntary one, which requires non-refillable bean bag chairs to have closed and permanently disabled zippers. The defective chairs, which are manufactured by Ace Bayou Corp., of New Orleans, Louisiana, did not meet the voluntary standard. These chairs have two zippers, one on the exterior of the chair, and another zipper directly underneath that one. Both zippers can be easily unzipped and opened, creating the hazard for young children. The chairs being recalled were sold prior to July 2013 at the following retailers: Amazon, Bergner's, Big Lots, Bon-Ton, Boston Store, Carson's, Elder-Beerman, Herberger's, Meijer, Pamida, School Specialty, Wayfair, Walmart and Younkers. The price of the chairs ranged from $30 to $100 and came in a range of colors, shapes and sizes. If you or someone in your family has been injured due to a defective product, contact an experienced New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have for pain and loss.

Posted on in Dog Bites

dog bite, lawyer, attorney, New Braunfels injury lawyerSummer is here and that means more people enjoying outdoor activities. Children are out of school and neighborhood streets are busy with activity. It also means more people, both children and adults, are at a greater risk of being bitten by a dog.

According to statistics from the Center of Disease Control (CDC), every year almost 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs. Half of those dog-bite victims are children. One in five victims has to seek medical treatment for the bites they receive. Almost 450,000 children need medical attention for the bites they get. In one year alone, 27,000 dog bite victims get bitten by dogs so badly they require reconstructive surgery.

Children between the ages of 5 and 9 years old are most at risk of receiving injuries from a dog bite. And men are more likely than women to be victims of dog bites.

Contrary to what most people think, there is no specific breed of dog that is more apt to bite than others. Any dog has the capacity of suddenly biting. It’s important for everyone to know how to behave around an unfamiliar dog, and it is especially critical to teach children how to react to a strange dog. The CDC offers these tips to share with children:
  • Never approach a dog you do not know;
  • Never run away from a dog;
  • Never scream at a dog;
  • Teach children to stay very still – “like a tree” – if a strange dog comes near them;
  • If a dog knocks them down, teach them how to roll themselves up into a ball and not to move;
  • Never play with a dog unless there is an adult supervising;
  • Teach children that if they see a dog they do not know, to stay away and tell an adult;
  • Never lift a hand up to pet a dog’s head. Always keep your hand by your side and let the dog sniff your hand first;
  • Never bother a dog who is sleeping or eating;
  • If you are bitten by a dog, tell an adult immediately.
If your child has been bitten by a dog, contact an experienced New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the animal’s owner.

According to statistics by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vehicle crashes were the number one cause of accidental deaths for children 14 years and younger in 2012, with 1,100 lives lost. Another 176,000 children were injured. Sadly, despite increase use and awareness, many of those young victims were not restrained in child seats properly.

The CDC numbers show that infant car seats reduce the risk of death in car crashes by 71 percent for infants. The risk for toddlers, ages 1 to 4 years old, is reduced by 54 percent when properly restrained in child safety seats. For children ages 4 to 8, booster seats can reduce their risk by 45 percent. The CDC also recommends that children under the age of 12 always sit in the back of the vehicle. Airbags that go off can kill a young child. It’s also critical that a rear-facing infant car seat never be placed in the front seat or in front of an airbag.  The safest place for the child to be buckled in is the middle back seat. With so many seats and stages of development, it’s important to know which seat is appropriate for the age and size of your child.
  • Safety seats for babies from infancy to two years old should always be in a rear-facing seat. However, do not choose your child safety seat based on the age of the child. Check the manufacturer’s height and weight recommendations.
  • For children between the ages of two and five years old, a front facing child safety seat is appropriate. Again, it’s important to check the manufacturer’s height and weight recommendations before choosing the seat.
  • Once your child has physically outgrown a front-facing child safety seat, booster seats should be used. These seats are generally used for children between the ages of five and eight years old. Children should not stop using booster seats until the vehicle seat belts fit them properly. According to the CDC website, “seat belts fit properly when the lap belt lays across the upper thighs (not the stomach) and the shoulder belt lays across the chest (not the neck).”  This usually happens when a child is approximately 57 inches tall.
In addition to making sure the child is properly restrained in the safety seat, it’s also critical to make sure the seat itself is properly restrained in the vehicle. Most local police departments hold clinics where you can bring your vehicle to have them check and ensure the seat is properly restrained. If your child has been injured in a vehicle accident caused by another driver’s negligence, contact a New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what compensation your family may be entitled to.

The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

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