Nothing is more devastating than for a parent to see their child be hurt. The devastation can be made even worse if the injury is the result of a product purchased by a parent or caregiver.
Parents buy many items to keep their young children safe, from cribs to car seats to strollers. Unfortunately, in recent years, there has been a sizable uptick in injuries to infants due to unsafe baby products. Thousands of children are hurt each year when things go wrong with baby gear. Parents need to understand what their legal rights are if their child is one of the victims.
If a child is injured due to a defective or unsafe baby product, parents can often pursue a legal claim for damages by asserting product liability. If parents can show their child was hurt due to a defect in the product when the product was used as intended, this can give rise to a successful product liability claim.
Even in cases where the product was not being used as intended, an injury lawsuit may prevail if claimants can show the product was used in a manner that was foreseeable. Parents should work with an injury attorney to find out if they can hold a product manufacturer, designer or distributor accountable for damages. This ensures compensation not just for your child, but a greater likelihood similar injuries won't happen in the future.
There has been a surge in injuries in recent years in baby products turning out to be dangerous, according to troubling information provided by Scientific American. Researchers studied injuries over a decade-long period, discovering around 1.4 million injuries had occurred because of problems with baby products from 1991 to 2011.
The 1.4 million injuries didn't occur at uniform rates over the past decade. There were trends showing changes in injury rates. In the last four years of the study, for example, the number of injuries rose 24 percent. This was described as a "surge."
By comparison, during the early years of the study, the danger of baby walkers used during the early 1990s was becoming more clear to parents. This resulted in a decline in injuries to infants because parents were less likely to put children into walkers which could injure them.
Parents need to know the facts about the rising number of injuries attributed to baby gear. Today, more than 66,000 annual injuries happen due to baby products. A child in the U.S. is injured by a defective product every eight minutes.
Baby carriers are the leading cause of injuries related to products, with about 20 percent of injuries attributed to carrier problems. Crib and bedding-related injuries were the second leading cause of incidents in which infants got hurt. Approximately 19 percent of injuries could be traced to bedding issues, including problems with cribs, mattresses and bed linens. Drop-side cribs were so dangerous, they were banned in 2011 while the study was still ongoing.
Finally, strollers accounted for about 17 percent of the injuries sustained by infants due to baby products. Parents need to make certain they are using strollers, and all other baby products, in the safest way possible according to manufacturer instructions so they can reduce the chances of problems.
Issues can still happen with defective baby gear though, and parents must know their rights.