The Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT) has examined statistics and found that accidental injury to children is the second most prevalent cause of death in children; only cancer claims more lives each year.
The CAPT has revealed that thousands of children die each year after suffering an accident at home, at school or on the road. The most likely injuries a child under school-age is likely to sustain at home include stopping breathing from choking, suffocation or strangulation. Also included are poisonings, falls, burns and scalds and drownings.
There is some good news for families, though, and for the NHS as these accidents cost over £275 million each year, because accidents rates appear to be falling. However, the emotional cost to families with children who survive a life-threatening accident can be high.
Reggie Dhesi from the Children’s Accident Helpline is happy that the accident rates for children are falling but warned: “the bad news is that they are still too high, especially in children from more deprived backgrounds. We see the ongoing impact of accidental injury or death on the parents and families of the children involved daily, there is a lot of guilt and regret, and in many cases a need to seek justice if the accident is someone else’s fault. It’s a fraught and sensitive time and it’s made even more painful by the fact that the vast majority of the time the incident could have been prevented.”