When you first set out to find a bicycle accident attorney Ocala, FL you are going to need to consider a lot of things. For one, you need to know from the beginning that bicycle accidents are the number one reason why children visit the emergency room. With the level of traumatic brain injuries that children incur while riding their bicycles, a helmet can be the difference between a slight amount of injury and something far more serious. Since 443 million people under the age of 21 years old participate in the activity of bicycle riding each year in the US, a large number of serious injuries could be prevented or lessened through the regular use of a helmet.
Avoiding Undue Liability
To an extent, your case involving an injury caused by a driver colliding with your child while the child rides a bicycle can be harmed if there is the potential for accusing you of negligence. Though a bicycle accident attorney Ocala, FL could potentially lead a jury to understanding that you and your child are not likely at fault if an accident occurs, not having your child wear a helmet can be perceived as negligent on the part of a parent or guardian. While your child is undoubtedly not out to be injured, the net effect of taking such basic precautions as avoiding areas that have high automobile traffic and wearing a helmet can significantly lessen both the initial chance of receiving an injury and, further, lessen the severity of any injury that does occur.
If a bicycle accident attorney Ocala, FL represents a driver who collided with your child while your child was riding can paint a picture of either the child as taking unnecessary risks or you as being irresponsible in your parenting duties, this can be perceived by a jury as lessening the level of responsibility that the offending driver possesses. In the case of a catastrophic injury, you do not want yourself or your child to be accused of having any more responsibility for the accident or the concurrent injury than is absolutely necessary.
Reducing the Risk and Working with the Odds
It is estimated that 70 percent of children ride bicycles on a reasonably regular basis. Since adults are known to not ride as often as children do, there is a very high likelihood that at some point your child is not going to be under your direct supervision while out riding. Because of the ages of children who tend to ride the most often and the sheer volume of riders, it is estimated that 79 percent of everyone who is injured in a bicycling-related incident is between the ages of 5 years old and 14 years old. Beyond this, head injuries are the most likely to result in the serious injury or death in the rider. The best way to avoid a consultation with a bicycle accident attorney Ocala, FL is to keep your child from sustaining the injury in the first place.
Since your child is most likely going to be riding on many occasions when you are not watching them, it is imperative that your child wears a helmet whether you are around or not. Since simply wearing a helmet can significantly reduce the level of risk that naturally comes with riding a bicycle at any time, your child needs to be in the habit of wearing a helmet so as to reduce the likelihood that if an accident occurs there will be serious injury.
How Accidents can Hurt Your Child
As any accident occurs and a child is impacted by a motor vehicle, there are two types of injury that occur within the skull during the trauma. These two types of injuries are the initial impacting force on the skull itself and the impacting force on the brain within the skull that happens immediately thereafter. When your child properly wears a helmet, it is possible to substantially reduce the amount of injury, and estimates place the likelihood of reduction at 88 percent.
Not all Helmets are Equal
As any bicycle accident attorney Ocala, FL could tell you, not all helmets are created equal or remain that way over time. Helmets are not designed to last forever, and should generally be replaced at least every 5 years. Normal wear, hair oils and perspiration will cause the helmet's material components to deteriorate. Also, bicycle helmets are rated for precisely one impact. Even if the helmet is dropped and there is no obvious physical damage, the protection it offers could be significantly compromised.
While there is no law that mandates your child to wear a helmet, there is the responsibility of keeping your child safe.