My Million Dollar Baby

Abandoned stroller in Harper's FerryAn incident involving a 14 month old girl in a stroller who had fallen into the railway tracks in Philadelphia demonstrated how people around can readily help to save someone from further harm. People in the train station who witnessed the accident were galvanized into action. A man rushed to help the mother who jumped after the baby by taking the baby and helping the mother up to safety. Other passengers ran to help while another had the common sense to call transit police in order to give warning and stop the oncoming train. Authorities reported that the mother was distracted and did not notice that the stroller carrying her baby had slowly rolled forward until it tumbled into the railway tracks. The baby was taken to the hospital with a cut on her forehead. No charges were filed against the mother.

A possible insight into this incident could be that people do react tenderly to babies. The helplessness and innocence of a baby would tug at anyone’s heart. This is why we protect our babies the best that we can. Protecting a baby includes making sure that the products that we use for the baby’s needs are safe and accident proof. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is really looking after concerns on baby product safety. CPSC staff provides technical support for voluntary standards activities to address hazards associated with strollers. For the time period 1995-2005, there were 22 stroller-related deaths for children under the age of 5 reported to CPSC. According to the report, the majority of these deaths involved suffocation, entrapment, or positional asphyxiation of an infant. Based on a study conducted in 2000, there were numerous non-fatal incidents associated with strollers involving a variety of hazards such as instability, collapse, and non-functioning restraint systems. The CPSC however, cautioned consumers that these statistics only reported stroller related accidents and did not say that the accidents were caused by manufacturing defects in the strollers used.

Here are some helpful tips when buying a stroller for your baby:

  • Choose strollers that have practical brakes. A stroller must have easy to operate brakes and if possible it should lock the two wheels easily.
  • Buy a stroller that has a wide base. This is to avoid tipping over and hurting the baby in the process.
  • Choose a stroller that has a single footrest. This is to avoid trapping a little foot which may happen when the stroller has two separate foot rests.

Similarly, you can follow these simple guidelines on how to avoid accidents during stroller use. Remember this acronym. “BUSY MOM” when going out with the baby on a stroller.

B– Buckle up. Use the buckle to secure your baby inside the stroller. In case the stroller tips over, the baby will not easily fall and get hurt.

U– Use the brakes. When you come to stop, apply or use the brakes so that the stroller will not roll away.

S– Stay close. Do not leave your baby in a stroller unattended. Even when the brakes are applied, it is best to have your hand in the stroller handle at all times.

Y– You make sure that the toys you placed in the stroller bumper bar are securely fastened. Make sure also that the baby is in a safe distance when you fold or unfold a stroller.

M – make sure you do not use the handle bars to store or hang things. This will jeopardize the stroller’s balance and put it at risk for tipping over.

O– Observe properly the surroundings where you are placing the stroller. Is it overexposed to the sun? Are there potential risks in the area? Use good judgment for the safety of the baby depends on your proper evaluation of the surroundings.

M– Monitor regularly for product recalls. This is to make sure that the products that you are using for your baby are safe and of good quality.

If you have problems with some baby products, especially if the products caused injury to a baby, feel free to contact us at (801)506-0800. We can assist you with any personal injury resulting from defective products.

ImageHarper’s Ferry stroller party” copy right to Dave Gingrich

Ken Christensen
Partner, Founder at Christensen & Hymas
Ken Christensen is the founding partner of Christensen & Hymas. He is an avid cyclist, loves baseball, and enjoys spending time with his family in the outdoors.

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