School Safety (page 2)
- An estimated 14 million unintentional injuries are sustained by children ages 0-14 each year. Of these injuries, 10 to 25 percent occur in and around schools.
- Annually, one in 14 students will sustain an injury at school that is either temporarily disabling or will require medical attention.
- A study indicated that children are nine times more likely to sustain an unintentional injury than to be harmed as a result of violence while at school.
- Approximately 1 in 400 injury-related fatalities to children aged 5 to 19 years occur on school premises.
School Bus-Related Accidents
- More than half of all school-age pedestrians killed in school bus-related crashes are between the ages of 5 and 7.
- Approximately 90 percent of students who are injured in school bus-related incidents are occupants.
- Children ages 10 to 14 years account for 46 percent of school-related injuries.
- Male students are injured 1.5 times more often while at school than female students and are three times more likely to sustain an injury requiring hospital care than female students.
- Approximately 715,000 sports- or recreation-related injuries occur in and around schools each year.
- Among school-related injuries requiring hospitalization, falls (43 percent) and sports activities (34 percent) are the most frequent causes.
- Approximately 13,000 playground equipment-related injuries occur on school playgrounds during school hours.
- The three most common sites of school injuries are on the playgrounds, athletic fields and in gymnasiums. Shop classes account for 7 percent of injuries that occur at school.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has indicated the need for more schools to provide comprehensive health education in order to prevent unintentional injury. Injury prevention efforts in the school would include:
- Coordinated school health programs that promote lifelong unintentional injury skills through practice and reinforcement of safe behaviors.
- Collaborating with school personnel, students, families, community organizations and agencies, and businesses to develop, implement, and evaluate injury-prevention efforts.
Laws and Regulations
- In 31 percent of states and 90 percent of districts, schools are required to write an injury report when a student is seriously injured on school property.
- There are a multitude of state and local laws that affect childhood pedestrian injuries, including: low speed limits in residential areas; protecting pedestrians in crosswalks; providing for pedestrian walkways; prohibiting vehicles from passing school buses while loading and unloading passengers; providing for crossing guards; and requiring that pedestrians not cross streets at locations other than designated crosswalks.
- Playground equipment guidelines and standards have been developed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Fifteen states have enacted some form of playground safety legislation.
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