Articles Tagged with “head injuries”

Attorney David W. White fitting helmets at Framingham Earth Day 2019. Part of Breakstone, White & Gluck's Project KidSafe campaign to prevent head injuries.

Attorney David W. White fitting helmets at Framingham Earth Day 2019. Part of Breakstone, White & Gluck’s Project KidSafe campaign to prevent head injuries.

While many people enjoy cycling, very few enjoy the process of selecting and fitting a bicycle helmet. The challenge is even greater for parents who have to find helmets for their children.

Breakstone, White & Gluck launched our Project KidSafe campaign in 2013 to help children and families, along with other cyclists, overcome some of the challenges. Read some of our tips for getting started with a bicycle helmet which fits and protects:

  • Before you shop, find a flexible tape measure and measure around your head. Measure from about an inch above your eyebrows.
  • Rather than shopping online, try to purchase a helmet at a local bicycle shop. Ask the staff to help you fit it properly.
  • Before you purchase, ask if the helmet meets the safety standards set by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
  • Don’t share bicycle helmets. Each cyclist should have their own helmet.
  • Store your helmet inside and avoid exposing it to heat in sunlight unless you are wearing it. Don’t leave it in your car for any extended period.
  • Replace bicycle helmets when they become worn or if you or your child outgrow yours. You may want to consider buying a new helmet every three years. From the outside, your helmet may appear to be in good condition. Yet the protective material inside can deteriorate without any visible signs.
  • Immediately replace bicycle helmets which hit the ground in a bicycle accident or fall.
  • Carry your bicycle helmet if you want to use a bikeshare. Make it a rule not to rent a bike without a helmet.
  • Plan ahead: Keep an extra bicycle helmet at work or at home.
  • Remember, parents who wear helmets encourage children to wear helmets.
  • Take children to bicycle safety events in the community to encourage their interest in cycling and safety.

About Breakstone, White & Gluck

Breakstone, White & Gluck is a Boston personal injury law firm which represents those injured by the negligence and wrongdoing of others across Massachusetts. After more than two decades of representing cyclists who have been injured, the firm’s partners launched the Project KidSafe campaign to help prevent injuries on bikes and encourage children to wear helmets throughout their lives. The firm specializes in all areas of personal injury law.

Learn more about our attorneys.

Learn more about the Project KidSafe campaign.

Watch a video demonstrating how to fit a bicycle helmet.

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With a donation from Breakstone, White & Gluck’s Project KidSafe campaign, children at The Home for Little Wanderers are ready for safe riding.

We made a special donation of 100 bicycle helmets to The Home this week, for children and young adults in The Home’s residential and special education programs in Roxbury Crossing, Plymouth and Walpole. The Home serves children and young adults who need family support because of abuse, neglect or other reasons. For more than 200 years, it has filled a critical need in the Boston area, keeping children safe and helping them transition into foster care, adoption or independent living as adults. The Home provides the basic necessities of food, shelter and clothing for children, as well as mental health services, counseling, special education and many other services.

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Photo:  Attorney David White stopped at The Home for Little Wanderers this week and delivered bicycle helmets from Breakstone, White & Gluck’s Project KidSafe campaign. He was greeted by (left) Paige Oldaker, Leadership Gifts Officer; Johanna Lauer, Volunteer Mentor; and Taryn Marino, Manager of Volunteer and Mentor Programs. (next to David).

Breakstone, White & Gluck is committed to keeping children safe through our Project KidSafe campaign. Since 2013, our law firm has donated over 10,000 bicycle helmets to children who need one in Massachusetts. Our goal is to encourage children to wear bicycle helmets every time they ride to prevent serious head injuries in bicycle accidents or falls.

We learned about The Home’s need for new helmets from a volunteer. She told us children at The Harrington House in Roxbury Crossing were wearing old and worn-down helmets. Then we learned about the need at the other programs and were told the children and young adults love to ride bikes. We saw an opportunity to help.

“We were very pleased to make this donation, especially since the children really enjoy riding bikes,” Attorney David White said. “The Home for Little Wanderers is a lifeline for many children who have been neglected or abused in Massachusetts. While receiving services, the children should have the opportunity to ride bicycles, play and just be kids for a few minutes each day. We hope with brand-new bicycle helmets, they can ride safely and have a little fun.”

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football.jpgStudent-athletes in Massachusetts will add a new drill to their warm ups this fall: concussion training aimed at preventing deaths, long-term injuries and disabilities.

In 2010, the state Legislature passed a law requiring training and education for anyone involved in public middle school and high school sports. The Department of Public Health issued guidelines in June detailing the requirements, which include:

  • Parents, players, coaches, school nurses, volunteers and others involved in sports must participate in annual state-approved training on how to recognize the symptoms of concussions.
  • Schools have a few options for fulfilling the training requirement, including offering training materials at parent meetings and online trainings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Federation of State High School Associations.
  • Student-athletes who suffer a head injury must be immediately removed from play and get medical clearance before returning.
  • Student-athletes diagnosed with a concussion must have a written plan for returning to the game and the classroom.
  • Student-athletes with a history of head injuries must file an injury report before every season.

Across the country, an estimated 136,000 student-athletes suffer concussions in high school sports each year.

Concussions are often referred to as a “metabolic cascade,” a series of changes in which the brain’s nerve cells stop functioning properly and blood flow slows down.

Concussions can occur when athletes collide with other players, equipment or the ground. It is important for people who suffer concussions to reduce physical and cognitive activity. When there is a subsequent injury, concussions can be fatal and result in long term injuries impacting memory, mood and impulses.

Concussions can be difficult to diagnose in part because the effects are not visible on imaging tools such as CT scans or MRIs.

Massachusetts schools are making changes as awareness about concussions increases throughout the sports and medical community. Starting this fall, Ivy League football players are limited to suiting up for two full-contact practices each week. The pending contract agreement will implement new guidelines for National Football League (NFL) players as well.

For more information, click to read this article in The Boston Globe.
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cyclist.jpgBay State Bike Week is a good time to remember safety for Massachusetts bicyclists, motorists and all who travel the roads.

Motorists can commit to being vigilant in looking out for bicyclists this summer and slowing down. Bicyclists can ask whether they have taken all possible safety precautions.

These safety precautions must include bicycle helmets. Bicycle helmets are 85- to 88-percent effective in mitigating head and brain injuries in bike crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Nearly 70 percent of all fatal bike crashes involve head injuries, according to NHTSA figures. But only about 20 to 25 percent of all bicyclists wear helmets.

Individual states govern whether bicyclists must wear helmets. California was the first state to pass a bicycle helmet law in 1986. Twenty five years later, 21 other states have adopted laws aimed at cyclists under age 16. Fourteen states have no helmet laws, though the NHTSA recommends states adopt legislation.

Massachusetts requires helmets be worn by those 16 and younger while operating a bicycle or traveling on one as a passenger. Helmets must be approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Adults in Massachusetts and other states should not wait for the law to require them to wear helmets. In 2006, 773 bicyclists were killed and another 44,000 were injured in traffic crashes across the country. Children 14 and younger accounted for 98 of those fatalities, making this one of the most frequent causes of injury related death for young children. But the other 675 bicyclists were older and many of them could have also benefited from the protection of a bicycle helmet.

Click here for more information about bicycle helmet laws from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
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