Child Backover Prevention—Lifesaving Tips
Keeping children safe around motor vehicles, especially in soccer mom situations, is crucial. One of the most common ways little kids are run over is when they are hit by passenger cars like SUVs and mini-vans that are moving in reverse. This topic is a tremendously gruesome and arduous topic to think about or discuss.
But this is one topic that is necessary to keep your child from being harmed or killed. Children of all ages can be hurt when a vehicle is moving in reverse. And this remains especially true for small children, those on skateboards and those lower profiled toys like Big-Wheels, tricycles, and bicycles.
These types of mishaps are often referred to by personal injury attorneys as backover accidents. These mishaps occur in crowded parking lots, and the lesser dense neighborhood driveways more often than one might fathom. This mishap is even more true in the hustling and bustling areas of Greater Los Angeles, California.
Of course, these events are not just in the City of Angels. In fact, every other state in the U.S. is faced with the tribulations of a child getting run over by a car backing up. Knowing these tips below may help prevent a devastating situation involving your child.
As discussed, backover mishaps happen when a vehicle is backing out of a driveway. But they also occur at parking spaces. Most of all, the driver backs over a child, because the driver is unaware and/or unable to see the behind the vehicle.
Not All Cars Have Safety Features to Avoid Kids.
In fact, the more expensive cars like Mercedes and BMW are often equipped with rearview cameras, so this can severely diminish the risks of running a kid over. But not all vehicles have these devices or beepers. And still some over-rely on cameras and buzzers instead of keeping their heads on a swivel.
This type of event is especially emotionally distressing when the driver of the vehicle is the parent. After all, they either hit or ran over their child. Plus, in most of these incidents, the children are young. So this makes them too small to be seen by even the most astute driver.
Avoid Guilt by Looking for Children When In Reverse.
Most of all, in many of these cases the parent backing up tells the authorities they did not see the child behind the vehicle. This lack of vision is a heartbreaking situation for the parents and leaves the feeling guilt-ridden. But can also leave a parent facing a negligent homicide charge, or worse!
What are Some Common Factors in Car Backing Up Accidents?
Common factors are many of these tragedies revolve around small children. Of course, they are riding bicycles, tricycles or other riding toys that are low to the ground. Statistical data from kidsandcars.org shows that approximately 50 children are hurt or killed in back over vehicle accidents weekly in the United States.
Ehline Law Firm attorney Michael Ehline understands this is an upsetting and traumatic topic to discuss. But one key thing that is important for anyone who operates a car. Being educated about the ways they can prevent back over accidents is a must.
Human interaction is key. Take a look at this below list I compiled to help people out.
- Rear vehicle Detection Devices: Do not depend on backup cameras or warning noises when the car or truck is backing up. These devices can be helpful to the driver, but they cannot take the place of visually walking around the vehicle. Also look behind and use the mirrors. It is reasonably foreseeable that a child can be behind a car in certain situations. Pay close attention and keep your head on a swivel when leaving the little league and soccer practice. Same goes for backing out of parking lots in areas like schools. Pay particular attention at shopping malls where more children are typically present.
- Supervision: Children should always be supervised when they are around or near vehicles that may be moved. Even at home if one of the family may be going out, both parents need to coordinate the moving of the car concerning where the kids are on the property. Negligent supervision is also a crime in California. So for those of you who are more concerned about saving your skin, than looking after the skins of your little ones beware.
- Education: Teaching children to never play near or behind cars or pickup trucks is essential.
- Move Away: Children should be taught to move away from any vehicle that starts or as soon as they see the driver getting into the car and transfer to a safe area.
- Bicycles and Toys: Do not allow bikes or toys to be in the driveway or children to use them in the driveway. Teach them that is a danger zone and off limits.
- Children and Vehicles: Always be alert to children, especially smaller children who may be near or behind a vehicle.
- Standing to the Side: When children outside always have them rise to the side of the vehicle to see them. That way drivers can view them while backing out of the driveway or parking space.
- Prior to Reverse: Before engaging the vehicle in reverse walk around the car or truck to ensure nothing is behind it. Make sure there is no child behind the car.
- Mirrors: Always use the mirrors when the vehicle is in reverse. And remember children can move in the path of the car quickly.
- Look: Always look when the vehicle is in reverse. After all, children’s movements are unpredictable.
- Blind Spots: Remember that every car, SUV or truck has blind spots. So when backing up, especially in some models, the blind spot can be enormous.
When care is taken and precautions are used, back over accidents can be prevented. So do your duty and save children from being harmed or fatally injured. Pay attention while backing up your car.
Author Michael Ehline is a philosopher, father, and attorney who can be contacted at: (213) 596-9642.