PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The school year is winding down and kids will soon be outside more during the day.
During the school year, there’s one time of day that’s more dangerous for them to be outside.
When it comes to kids having traumatic injuries, there is a time of day they’re at the highest risk – school dismissal time.
“We see a lot of kids who are distracted on their way home, and we certainly see kids getting hit by cars,” Dr. Kevin Mollen said. “And we certainly see a lot of kids who are on their bikes getting hit by cars.”
Fractured arms and legs, injuries to internal organs, bleeding in the abdomen even head injuries, too.
“We are one of the busiest pediatric trauma centers in the country,” Dr. Mollen said. “It’s something that we see every week here.”
To prevent these injuries, certain behaviors have to change and it all comes down to paying attention.
“How often do we see kids walking around with their nose buried in their phone?” Dr. Mollen said. “Talk to your kids about distraction on the way home from school, or walking around the neighborhood. Because it’s a real risk.”
And it’s not always kids to blame.
“We as drivers need to be more cognizant of kids being on the road at the end of the day. And really pay attention to traffic signs. In particular around school zones, around bus stops. We’re every bit as much a part of the problem,”Dr. Mollen said.
As school ends and summer gets into full swing, the pattern changes. Kids get hit earlier in the day, and later into the evening.
While kids generally do better than adults with trauma, they do best if they aren’t traumatized at all.