THE RECOMMENDATIONS — Be alert when riding. Horses will bolt when startled by loud noises or sudden movements. The horse’s ears can provide clues to its state. Ears pointed back can indicate anger or fear. Ears to the side can mean the horse is sick or fatigued. Don’t ride if you are tired or under the influence of alcohol or medications. A riding helmet can greatly reduce the risk of head injuries, a common and potentially deadly occurrence. Wear clothing that is comfortable and not too loose. Sturdy leather boots with a minimal heel will protect the foot and fit securely in the stirrup. Be sure saddle and stirrups are secure and properly adjusted, and are appropriately to the size of the rider. New riders should receive instruction from experienced instructors, and young riders should be supervised. If you begin to fall, try to roll away from the horse when you land. Approach horses from the shoulder, which is less threatening. Never walk behind a horse or any large animal. CHILDREN HIT BY CARS THE NUMBERS — In all, 47 children brought to University Hospital were seriously injured by cars last year. Three of them died. On average, they were in the hospital more than five days. Those ages 1 to 4 had the most injuries, at 19, and children 5 to 9 had 14. THE PROBLEM — As pedestrians, children pose a special risk. Small children may not be visible to drivers, especially when cars are backing out of driveways. Kids may not be able to judge the distance or speed of vehicles, or don’t know traffic rules. Careless or speeding drivers may not be alert for children playing in the street or walking to school. Nationwide, more than one in five children ages 5 to 15 who were killed in car crashes were pedestrians. THE RECOMMENDATIONS — Preschool-age children should not be allowed to cross streets alone. Teach all children a green light doesn’t mean it’s always safe to cross, but rather they should stop, look and listen for cars at the curb, then keep looking left and right before and as they cross. When walking, they should stay on the sidewalk or walk facing oncoming traffic when no sidewalk is available. Light-colored clothing or reflective material will make kids more visible at night. Teach them how to look for signs that a car is about to move (rear lights, exhaust smoke, engine sounds, wheels turning). Drivers should stay alert for children in neighborhoods and near schools.
2014 Community Trauma Report
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