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Alaska Personal Injury Law Blog

Internal injuries and bleeding: Signs to watch for in children

Young children have no way to tell you exactly how they feel after an accident or injury. It may be very clear to you that your 1-year-old is injured, but he or she can't put the issues into words. Even older children, who have a far better command of their language skills, often struggle to really explain how they feel or what is wrong.

External injuries often aren't hard to spot. Internal injuries, though, can go unnoticed if you don't know what signs to look for. If your child is dealing with internal bleeding, some of the symptoms could include:

  • Swelling in the abdominal region
  • Internal pain and discomfort
  • Feeling lightheaded
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Fainting
  • Tightness and localized swelling
  • Ecchymosis, which is an area of skin that turns a deep purple

Woman killed in car accident in Anchorage

A woman died in a car accident in Anchorage on May 30, a Thursday. The accident happened on the city's east side.

Per reports from the area and the Anchorage police, the wreck happened at the intersection where Edward Street meets Debarr Road. It took place right around 3 p.m. The woman who died was not driving either vehicle but was simply the passenger in one of them. The car she was riding in slammed into an SUV.

Passing risks that people keep taking

Passing another car, especially on a two-lane road, is one of the most dangerous things that you can do while driving. You intentionally enter the oncoming traffic lanes, driving the wrong direction, even if just for a short time.

That said, it is possible to pass safely and effectively. There are times when you can't avoid it. This doesn't eliminate the risk entirely, but it can make it much safer.

How often do children fall?

Falls are one of the leading causes of injury for most age groups. Adults often fall on the job, such as construction workers who fall off of ladders. Older adults often slip and fall in the home, and they wind up in the emergency room.

But what about young children? How often do they get injured in falls?

Tips for backing up an RV or travel trailer

Backing up an oversized vehicle, like an RV or a travel trailer, can be very hard. You have severely limited visibility. You have huge blind spots, even with your mirrors. Plus, this is probably not your daily driver, so you already feel a bit out of your element as soon as you get behind the wheel.

How can you back up safely and effectively? Here are a few tips:

  • Get help. Ask someone to be a spotter. They can stand behind you but off to the side, watching for things outside of your field of vision. They can then give you directions and call out a warning if need be.
  • Scout out the area first. Don't just glance at it in your mirror and then back up. Stop the RV, get out and walk around through the area. Are there other cars? Are there people on foot? What fixed objects do you need to avoid?
  • Practice in a safe space. Many people back up for the first and only time of the year when they get to a campsite. It's hard to drive any vehicle without practice, and it's especially hard with an over-sized and complicated vehicle. Take time to work on your skills at home or in a parking lot before you need to use them in the real world.

Distracted driving and the smartphone epidemic

In previous generations, parents worried that their kids would become addicted to cigarettes, cocaine or heroin. They worried about underage drinking and drunk driving. They knew that these addictive substances could change their children's lives forever, could cause deadly car accidents and could even take their lives.

It's not that parents don't worry about that in 2019. They do, and teens still struggle with substance abuse. However, there is now a new addiction that parents need to consider, as well: cellphone addiction.

More than a third of deadly accidents involve drunk driving

Drunk driving accidents often take lives, and it's always heartbreaking because it's so easy to prevent a crash like this. If people simply decided to only drive when they were sober, a lot of lives would be saved.

If you're wondering just how bad this is, you should know that 36% of deadly accidents in Alaska involve drunk driving. That's more than a third of all of the traffic-related fatalities in the state.

After your child gets injured, here's how to talk to them

When a child suffers a serious injury, like a head injury, a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or a spinal cord injury, it can be hard for them to accept. It shakes the way that they see the world. They feel worried and nervous. They understand just how fragile and dangerous life can be.

As a parent, you need to be careful with how you guide them through this. The conversations that you have with them are going to shape how they think and feel. What they take away from the incident and how they react to it largely depends on you. So, how should you talk to them?

Car accident risks: Examples from a truck driver

Few people understand the risks that we face on the road like professional drivers. Truck drivers spend every single day out there, watching people make mistakes and get into accidents. They know what it's like and the hazards they have to avoid.

To better help everyone understand, one truck driver wrote about all of the examples of poor driving he sees on a daily basis. Some of them include:

  • People who do not understand that they are driving in a blind spot. They just stay there, tucked out of sight, and are very difficult to detect.
  • People who cross multiple lanes, cutting off cars, trying to get to an exit on the freeway.
  • Drivers who pass on the right instead of the left. Naturally, this also implicates slow drivers who stay in the left or middle lanes, rather than moving to the right.
  • Drivers who use their phones behind the wheel. They get distracted by text messages, social media, the GPS and much more.
  • People who seem to think that they're in an action movie, driving their cars like they're on the cast of The Fast and the Furious.
  • Drivers who do not know how to drive properly in construction zones, where you have less space and speeds can fall considerably.
  • Drivers who just cannot keep a constant speed. They speed up and slow down for no reason.
  • People who drive too close to the next car. Many tailgaters, despite being very dangerous, don't even know that they're too close.

Is that playground safe? Here are the statistics

Your children probably love recess and cannot wait to get out on the playground when they're at school. You probably have great memories of this time of freedom and fun from when you were in school. However, no matter how perfect it seems in your memories or how much your children love it now, you do have to ask yourself just how safe they are.

To start this process, let's take a look at some statistics regarding playground safety:

  • In 10 years, one study linked 147 fatalities with activity on the playground.
  • The study also found a large number of injuries, 79 percent of which came from falls.
  • In 39 percent of these injury cases, children suffered arm bone fractures.
  • In 22 percent of the cases, the children had cuts and lacerations.
  • In another 20 percent of injury cases, children wound up with abrasions and contusions.
  • Finally, in 11 percent of the cases, children had sprains and strains.

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