One morning earlier this month, two vehicles struck a 13-year-old Orange County boy as he walked to school. The pedestrian accident occurred at some time around 7:30 a.m. in the 18900 block of Spring Street near Santiago Middle School, the school in which the boy attended. A westbound Toyota 4Runner struck the boy first, the impact throwing him into opposite lanes of traffic. An eastbound Land Rover Discovery was the second vehicle to strike the boy.
“He suffered moderate injuries and was taken to a nearby hospital”, explains Jim Ballidis, a California injury attorney.
Unfortunately, accidents that occur around schools are all too common. Hurried drivers, bicyclists, skateboarders, and pedestrians can be a dangerous combination. Moreover, the activities students engage in while at school can be dangerous without proper instruction and supervision.
Between 10% and 25% of the more than 14 million unintentional injuries to children each year happen on school premises. That’s not too surprising since more than 53 million children in America spend almost a quarter of their waking hours on school property.
Recently a verdict here in Orange County Superior Court documented the clash between the Huntington Beach City School District and the Camm family. The suit claimed that Samuel Camm had cut off his thumb while using the school’s band saw in his woodshop class. Additionally, there were reports that the saw was “defective and dangerous.” The school settled privately and the undisclosed settlement will pay for the various surgeries and accrued medical bills.
Last November, 15-year-old North High School student Zachary Kimura and his parents, David and Wanda, filed a negligence claim against the Torrance Unified School District after he suffered first- and second-degree burns on his face, neck, arms, and hands during an accident in one of the classrooms.
On Friday, October 22, students and staff members were cooking Korean barbeque on three butane stoves when one of the stoves malfunctioned, igniting into a fireball 6 feet wide and 12 feet high, reported the Daily Breeze. Kimura, who had purchased a plate of food and was waiting in line, and several other students were injured by the blast. His claim alleges that the school district neglected to take precautions to protect the students, to provide proper supervision, and to obtain permits to use the stoves in the classroom.
Due to the relatively high risk students have of suffering injuries, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, has created a new school health brochure. School staff and students will find safety tips and guidelines for preventing unintentional injuries in the 2010 National Health Objectives.
A free, downloadable version of the brochure can be found at the CDC’s website