A massive number children show up in the emergency room every year in the United States because they are hurt by shopping carts. In fact, the average number of children taken to emergency rooms is about 24,000 every year. From the years 1990 and 2011, a total number of children hurt by shopping cart injuries was 530,494. That averages out to 66 children a day.
A researcher from the study that produced these figures stated that voluntary safety standards that apply to United States shopping carts are inadequate. In fact, the number of shopping cart-related injuries to children is on the rise.
The most common of these injuries are the result of children falling from shopping carts; these injuries account for about 70.4 percent of the injuries. Meanwhile, other injuries happen when children fall over carts, run into carts, have the cart fall on top of them or get their body parts trapped in the carts. In 78.1 percent of the injuries requiring emergency room care, the injuries involved head wounds. From 1990 to 2011, concussions have risen from 3,483 to 12,333.
According to the researchers, shopping carts should be better designed to prevent these kinds of injuries. Changes might involve placing the seating area on a level that is closer to ground level so the children do not fall as far and so that tip-over risks are lowered. Restraints in the carts could also be improved.
In some cases, shopping cart accidents are not the result of parental or child negligence. Sometimes, they are the result of manufacturer negligence or the negligence of the store where the shopping cart should be properly maintained so that it is safe for use. Parents of children injured in shopping cart accidents may therefore wish to speak with a personal injury law firm to discuss the possibility of pursuing a legal claim for damages.