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Preventing childhood accidents

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Did you know:

• “Suffocation is the number one cause of unintentional injury-related death for children under the age of 1 year”

• “70% of suffocation deaths among infants were from accidental suffocation or strangulation in bed in 2010”

• “262, 300 children were seen in emergency departments for injuries caused by toys in 2011”

• “The majority of childhood suffocation, choking and strangulation incidents occur in the home”

• “The risk of a child being injured as a result of a fall at home is twice the risk as at child‐care”

• “The number of serious injuries or deaths as a result of button batteries has increased more than 9‐fold in the past decade”

• “Every 8 minutes a child goes to the ER for medicine poisoning and almost 9 times out of 10, the medicine belongs to an adult”

Injuries are the number one killer of kids in the United States, according to well-documented research from Safe Kids Worldwide. They also include television tip-overs, distracted pedestrians, and seat belts, according to the organization’s Home Safety Fact Sheet 2013.

Falls have decreased from 1999 to 2010, but suffocation has increased during the same time period, peaking in 2008, according to a graph on their website.

Safe Kids Worldwide isn’t new. Founded in 1988 by Dr. Marty Eichelberger of the Children’s National Medical Center and sponsored by Johnson and Johnson, it offers not only information but also community events organized by its local chapters to raise awareness of child safety.

For more information about childhood accidents, try this:
Childhood strangulation causes can now be prevented

Linda Chalmer Zemel also writes the Buffalo Books column. She teaches in the Communication Department at SUNY Buffalo State College. Her new children’s book, Cousins, is available on and



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