According to the American College of Surgeons (ACS), a trauma occurs every four seconds in the United States. The Red Duke Trauma Institute is committed to saving lives and to improving the welfare of the Greater Houston area. Avoiding risky behaviors and following some simple steps around the home can help keep you and your family safe.

Motor Vehicle Safety

Adult buckling a child into a car seatMore than 2 million drivers and passengers are treated in emergency departments as the result of being injured in motor vehicle crashes each year. One of the leading causes of death in the U.S., motor vehicle crashes are a serious public health problem (CDC, 2013). Many of these crashes are preventable and drivers and passengers can take actions to reduce the risk of injury and death when on the roads. See below for tips to keep you and your loved ones safe:

Infant and Child Safety

Child wearing a life jacket in a poolEach year, an estimated 8.7 million children and teens from birth to age 19 are treated in emergency departments (EDs) for unintentional injuries and more than 9,000 die as a result of their injuries—one every hour (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2013). The statistic is staggering. Every hour, a preventable injury takes the life of a child.

While we have made great strides in reducing the rate of child deaths as a result of injury over the last decade, sadly this is still the #1 killer of children and teens in the United States. Injuries often occur in predictable ways and can be completely avoided with parental supervision, education, awareness and planning. Common causes of fatal and nonfatal childhood injuries include: falls, transportation and pedestrian related injuries, drowning, fires or burns, poisoning, and suffocation.

Fall Prevention

Woman climbing stairsFalls are the leading cause of injury across the lifespan. For children under the age of 4, more than 80% of these injuries occur in the home. Most of these home injuries are due to a lack of parental supervision or safety precautions around stairs, furniture, and windows and the use of infant walkers.

Older children experience falls while outside on playground equipment. For older Americans, falls represent a serious health problem, causing thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations annually. Each year, one in three adults age 65 or older will experience a fall, risking traumatic injury or disability and increasing the likelihood of future falls.

Additionally, falls are the leading cause of injury death among Americans aged 65 and older. (CDC, 2013). Fortunately, falls are preventable. See the tips below for information on how to prevent falls for your yourself and your loved ones.

Seasonal and Holiday Safety

Mother and child watching fireworksWhile the holidays are a joyous time for tradition and family gatherings, it also can create opportunities for tragic, unintentional injuries to occur. See the tips below for information on seasonal and holiday safety.


Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention

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