Friday, July 09, 2010

Summer Is “Trauma Season”

Columbus – The Ohio Division of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is encouraging parents and caregivers to take extra precaution this summer while children are participating in summer activities. In Ohio, there were 20,578 children ages 0-15 years transported by EMS during Trauma Season in 2009. 7,490, or 36 percent, of those were transported due to an injury. A total of 2,557 kids were admitted to hospitals for longer than 48 hours for treatment of injuries.

“We want everyone to have a safe and fun summer, and that starts by always putting safety first, whether it’s by buckling your seat belt or making sure children are out of harm’s way at the playground or at home in the backyard,” said Ohio Department of Public Safety Director Thomas Stickrath.

Injuries tend to peak during the summer months (May-August) for children ages 14 and younger. Nationally this summer nearly three million children will be rushed to emergency rooms for serious injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes, drowning, bike crashes, pedestrian incidents, falls and other hazards.

“EMS personnel are prepared for Trauma Season. However, parents and caregivers can prevent many summer-related injuries with safety gear, proper education and parental supervision,” said Division of EMS Executive Director Richard Rucker. “By teaching children early on about good safety habits, they may be able to avoid future visits to the emergency room.”

The EMS Division encourages parents and caregivers to focus on different aspects of safety during Trauma Season and share topics such as lawnmower safety, swimming safety, and pedestrian safety with their children. The Division is offering these overall tips as a guide to avoiding some of the more common injuries:

Ride Safe
Secure children in the appropriate child safety seat or seat belt for their age and size. Kids should always be secured in the back seat.
Swim Safe
Always supervise young children near water and insist children wear personal flotation devices when on boats, near open bodies of water or participating in water sports.
Wheel Safe
Make sure kids wear properly fitting protective gear every time they ride their bikes, scooters, inline skates or skateboards. Teach children the rules of the road.
Walk Safe
Never let a child under age 10 cross the street alone. Teach children to obey traffic rules. Make sure kids wear retro-reflective materials, and don’t let them walk alone at night. If they must walk at dawn or at dusk, make sure they carry a flashlight.
Play Safe
Always supervise children at playgrounds or in the backyard. Make sure they play on a safe surface, such as mulch, rubber or fine sand.


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