Austin, TX Summer Accident Safety

There are a few weeks this summer to hit the last items on your summer bucket list. If you’re longing for an afternoon at Barton Springs Pool, to lounge at Deep Eddy, float the river in San Marcos or New Braunfels – the good news is there’s still time. Although the pandemic closed down many of the quintessential central Texas activities, crowds are hungry for outdoor leisure now that it’s possible to reopen.

Summers in Austin are full of leisure and relaxation. But there are some risks in any year that come with common summer activities. It is also a time of drinking, moving, sunburns, and reckless driving. Be aware of the risk for injury during some of the most popular summer activities. Read on to see where there are increased risk of injury.

Americans Travel Greater Distances by Car During Summer Months

Auto safety service company, AAA announced in its annual predictions that 2021 may be one of the biggest years for summer road trips in history. Out of town drivers may be distracted, unfamiliar with routs, or more prone to drive under the influence.

Many who stayed home in 2020 to avoid risk of Coronavirus can now travel fully vaccinated as restaurants and businesses have opened doors to the public. Families with a pent up urge for travel want to protect vulnerable children from exposure to Covid-19 on crowded planes and trains. As experts don’t expect vaccinations to be available for children under 12 until mid to late fall of 2021, these families may opt for private motor vehicle for summer recreation.

With Texas families traveling by vehicle, it’s important to remember risks for injury and how to prevent them. Child carseats prevent injury, and so do habits to prevent children or pets left in hot vehicles.

Child motor vehicle injuries and prevention:

  • The leading causes of injury death differ by age group, i.e. suffocation for infants and motor vehicle accidents for teens.
  • In the U.S., motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death among children. In 2018, 636 children 12 years of age and under died in an auto accident. And more than 97,000 children were seriously injured.
  • The prevalence of child auto crash injuries are rooted in the use of properly used safety gear. And buckling up is important for children of any age. Of those children who died in crashes in 2017, 49% of 8-12 year olds were not buckled up. Compare that to 36% of 4-7 year olds, and 22% of children less than 4 years old.
  • Never Leave Children or Pets in a Hot Car:

  • In 2019, 53 children died nationally due to heatstroke from being left in a hot vehicle. The internal temperature of a vehicle rises rapidly, and a child’s body temperature can rise 5 times faster than an adult’s. A child may suffer severe injuries or die in a matter of minutes.
  • Accidental injuries are the number 1 cause of death for Texans between 1 and 44 years old.
  • Leaving pets alone in a parked vehicle is illegal in several states. It is not currently specifically addressed by any law in Texas. However, pets can suffer heat stroke in vehicles. Especially animals with flat faces, such as pugs or Persian cats, can have difficulty panting to cool off. Even if the air outside is only 70 degrees, the internal temperature of the car can rise to 90 degrees, or 120º if the outside air is just 85º.
  • For more information on specific child injuries and ways to prevent them, read Child Injury Stats and Facts.

    Boating Accidents

    Boating comes with a variety of dangers and numerous potential accidents that people must be aware of. 10 people die every day from unintentional drowning and boating accidents result in 40 deaths a year in the state of Texas. When boating make sure that:

    • Everyone is wearing a life vest, especially children under 13, as is required by Texas law.
    • The person operating the boat has a boating license.
    • Someone on the boat is CPR certified.
    • You are not boating during hazardous weather conditions.

    For more information on boating safety, as well as swimming safety tips, check out our safety tips here.

    Need help? Get help from a lawyer experienced withboating accidents.

    Motorcycle Accidents

    Motorcycle accidents and injuries are unfortunately common. One major factor in injuries is not wearing the proper gear. This summer, don’t pass on wearing gear that could save your life because it is hot out. Always wear a helmet, long sleeves, pants, and proper footwear. And just to motivate you to properly gear up, here are some Motorcycle statistics:

    • Motorcycle accidents have decreased substantially over the last two years from 5,312 in 2008 to an estimated 3,600 in 2010.
    • The average engine size in 1990 was 769cc compared to 959 cc in 2001. As engines sizes increased 24 percent, deaths over that same period increased roughly 55 percent.
    • 60 percent of deaths from single vehicle accidents occur at night and many of them are the result of failing to properly navigate a curve
    • According to one study, the recent decline in motorcycle deaths is the result of fewer recreational riders following the recession
    • More than 96 percent of motorcycle accidents result in some kind of injury to the rider
    • There were 463 motorcyclists (operators and passengers) killed in 2014. Fifty percent (50%) of motorcyclists that were killed were not wearing helmets at the time of the crash.

    For more on proper attire and safety tips, check out our post on Motorcycle Safety. For tips on Motorcycle Insurance Coverage and what to do after an accident, read here.

    Bicycle Accidents

    McMinn Practice Page: Bicycle Accidents

    Many people opt for biking in the summer in order to get some fresh air and avoid wasting precious time sitting in traffic. But, due to the heat, biking can be very dangerous. Here are some quick tips for biking in Austin:

    • When biking, follow all driving rules
    • Ride as far to the right as safely possible
    • Use hand signals when turning and stopping
    • At night, use bike lights and reflectors
    • Always ride with the flow of traffic

    Contact an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer.

    Moving Injuries

    Summer is a common time to see people moving in and out, especially around the college campuses. But moving during the summer can be even more dangerous, especially in the Austin heat. There are 9 moving steps that you need to follow:

    1. Protect Your Back
    2. Timing is Key: Avoid the Sun
    3. Stay Hydrated
    4. Be Careful on Busy Streets
    5. Be Cautious on the Sidewalks
    6. Wear the Right Shoes
    7. Use the Right Tools
    8. Invest in a Heavy Duty Lock
    9. Make it Fun

    If you are moving, just listing these tips is not enough. Make sure to check out our 9 Moving Musts for a more in depth look at safely moving in Austin.

    In some cases, a slip and fall may be considered a premises liability case. Contact a lawyer about a slip and fall premises liability case.

    Austin Dog Bite Injuries

    McMinn Practice Page: Dog Bite Injuries

    Dog bite injuries have become increasingly common, especially in the Austin headlines. If you are ever approached by an unfamiliar dog, please do the following:

    1. Know and Look for Signs of Aggression or Fear
    2. Stop Jogging and Walk
    3. Stand Still When Approached
    4. Don’t Make Eye Contact
    5. Never Run Away
    6. Back Away Slowly

    For more tips on avoiding dog bite injuries, please read our post on Dog Bites Stats and Facts.

    Austin Boat and Car Accident Lawyers | McMinn Law Firm

    Any of the previous scenarios sound familiar? Well McMinn has handled them all. McMinn has been around the block, and knows how to handle any type of accident case from start to finish. If you are in need of representation, McMinn Law Firm’s accident attorneys are available by phone, live chat, or web form 24/7.

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