Alcohol-Impaired Driving and Children’s Safety
Every state has its own rules regarding what safety guidelines exist for using car restraints when driving. In some situations, seatbelts are required for all drivers, no matter what age and no matter what location in a car a passenger is seated. In other states, age and seating location can determine the need for a seatbelt or not. What is fairly consistent across the board, though, are the considerable and serious rules that are in place for child occupants.
Under Pennsylvania child car seat laws, for example, children must be in an appropriate car seat until they reach the age of 8. After that, they may be restrained with a seatbelt. In fact, everyone in a car must be wearing a seatbelt.
There is clear and documented evidence supporting the value and need for seat belts and child car seats. Without proper restraints, anyone can suffer greater harm should a crash happen, and the risk of death is increased significantly. It is possible that the physical bodily harm a crash can cause can be minimized for passengers who wear the right car restraint.
Still, seatbelts and child safety seats are not a guarantee and confirmation that if a crash occurs, serious physical bodily harm will not be suffered. This is especially true for young children. Small bodies are more vulnerable to serious harm when they experience forceful impact.
Alcohol-impaired driving is one of the leading reasons that car accidents happen. When an alcohol-impaired driver operates an automobile, they are a grave threat to themselves, their passengers, and all others they share the roads with. This includes passengers in cars that are children.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2021, 25% of the deaths in children passengers aged 14 and younger happened by way of an alcohol-impaired driver. Of all of the passengers aged 14 and under who lost their lives in fatal car accidents, those who were riding in vehicles where the driver was impaired tended not to be properly restrained.
The CDC cites several studies where there is a strong correlation between impaired drivers and child passengers who are unrestrained versus drivers who are not impaired. One study found that children two years and younger who lost their lives in a crash were 2.2 times more likely to have not been in a proper restraint if the driver was drinking compared to drivers who didn’t drink.
Speak to a South Jersey Car Accident Attorney Today
Children are precious, and we must do everything to protect them. Driving drunk is not lawful, and it is dangerous to everyone, including children.
If your child was injured in a crash, please call our South Jersey car accident attorney at Monaco Law PC to schedule a free initial consultation at (609) 277-3166 for our New Jersey office and (215) 546-3166 for our office in Pennsylvania.
We are a New Jersey and Pennsylvania car accident law firm serving Atlantic County, Burlington County, Cape May County, Camden County, Cumberland County, Gloucester County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Ocean County, Salem County, and all of South Jersey.