Currently, it is statistically far more probable that a child will be injured in a Florida car accident than in an airplane accident, but The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has been promoting child passenger safety in all modes of transportation, including airplanes. Unfortunately, currently many people do not consider passenger safety for children on airplanes, but accidents can and do occur to children on airplanes.
In Florida, children are required to use age-appropriate safety restraints and adult passengers of cars are required to wear seat belts. On airplanes, however, child-appropriate seats are not offered in most cases and even adult seat belts are only optional – adult passengers are asked to wear their seatbelts during take-off and landing but are allowed to remove the belt to walk around the cabin outside of these times. Unfortunately, adults and children can be thrown violently about the cabin in the event of an accident or turbulence, and this can cause severe head injuries, brain injuries, broken bones, and other problems. In an emergency landing, it can be very difficult for a parent to hold onto a small child, making the risk of injury very high.
The NTSB has suggested mandating child safety seats on airplanes, but the suggestion is fraught with difficulties. For example, most airlines offer free tickets to young children. New child safety seat regulations would require parents to purchase an additional ticket for their children, which would cause economic problems for both airlines and parents. Advocates of the proposed changes note that in any crash situation – whether a Florida truck accident or car accident or plan accident – the force of the crash causes passengers to be thrown about, while restraints have been repeatedly proven to help prevent injuries.
Currently, parents can purchase safety restraints privately which are age-appropriate for children and which are designed for airplane use. However, use of these restraints requires children to be given their own seat, where currently many parents hold their small child on their lap. However, these devices can help protect a child from harm.
Parents may want to keep in mind, as well, that in a Florida airplane accident, adults may have a distinct advantage over smaller children. With a larger body mass, adults may be thrown about less vigorously than children and may simply be able to remain calmer. They may be more aware of potential dangers and may be more prepared to brace themselves or take other actions to protect themselves. Children, with less life experience, may panic and may be more vulnerable to injury.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a Florida airplane accident, contact the Flaxman Law Group for help. The Flaxman Law Group is able to offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case in our Miami, Hollywood, or Homestead, Florida offices. We can also meet in your home, hospital room, or place of work to discuss your case. Our experienced and compassionate team has helped thousands of personal injury victims across Southern Florida – put our experience to work for you.