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Defective Product Watch in Birmingham: Trampolines & Home Risks

Sep 26, 2012 - Birmingham, Personal Injury by

A new warning has been issued about the risks of child injury involving backyard trampolines. On Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics reported nearly 100,000 children a year are injured on these trampolines.

“Pediatricians need to actively discourage recreational trampoline use,” said Michele LaBotz, MD, FAAP, co-author of the report. “Families need to know that many injuries occur on the mat itself, and current data do not appear to demonstrate that netting or padding significantly decrease the risk of injury.”

Birmingham personal injury attorneys understand children are most at risk for injury by dangerous or defective products. Each year, the Consumer Products Safety Commission recalls more than 100 defective products marketed to children — including clothing, toys, cribs, strollers and highchairs.

When it comes to trampolines, safety experts say too many parents are lulled into a false sense of security by following the directions and using the various safety nets and mats meant to reduce risks. The problem is these safety measures have been shown to make little difference, and too many very, very serious injuries result — including broken bones, spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries.

Statistics show that three-quarters of the injuries occur when more than one child is jumping on the trampoline — in those cases, smaller children are 14 times more likely to be injured. Children under the age of 6 account for more than one-third of victims seen in emergency rooms as a result of such accidents. About half of those had fractures or dislocated joints.

The American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons says the number of trampoline injuries is actually much higher, with nearly 250,000 medically treated cases now occurring annually in the United Sates.

With back-to-school shopping only recently behind us, and the holidays just around the corner, autumn is a dangerous time for injury caused by dangerous or defective products being brought into the home. Studies continue to show that consumers miss 90 percent of recall notices — and commonly have recalled products in their home as a result. Making a point to check the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s website for new recalls when you change the calendar at the start of the month can be an excellent way to protect your family — particularly young children.

Earlier this month, the government reported the recall of some 500,000 vertical and horizontal blinds by Blinds Xpress, of Livonia, Michigan, after a 2-year-old Michigan girl strangled in the cord, which had no means of attachment to the wall or floor.

On Aug. 29, more than 2 million Summer Infant Baby Bathers were recalled by the government because of a risk of fall and head injuries.

Other recent recalls involve bunk beds, cribs, flammable clothing, strollers, highchairs and toys.

Consumers can also sign up at Recalls.gov to receive e-mails when the government issues a recall. The CPSC has jurisdiction over more than 15,000 types of consumer products, including appliances, sports and exercise products, furniture, clothing and electronics.

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Additional Resources:

Trampolines are no place for kids, docs warn, By Linda Carroll, NBC News, Sept. 24, 2012.

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