22 children died in accidents last year

22 children from zero to 14 years died in accidents in Austria last year. Significantly more than in 2021, which was still characterized by corona restrictions: At that time, 16 children were killed in accidents, according to the Road Safety Board (KFV).

Of the 22 children who lost their lives in 2022, 13 died in traffic accidents. Five drowned, two died in a severe storm in Carinthia, one child was killed in a tobogganing accident and one in an agricultural accident, according to the sad balance sheet of the KFV.

Almost 110,000 children were so badly injured in accidents last year that they had to be treated in hospital. This means that a child has an accident every five minutes. 75 percent of accidents happen at home and during leisure time, says KFV Managing Director Christian Schimanofsky. “The numbers are alarming.”

In the Corona year 2021, 95,300 injured persons under the age of 15 were counted. The figures come from the Injury Database Austria (IDB Austria), a statistical survey by the KFV, for which structured interviews are carried out in selected outpatient departments of Austrian hospitals.

Accidents pose the greatest health risk to children and young people. “While minor injuries from play and sport are part of a child’s development, those accidents in which children die or are permanently injured due to a lack of safety precautions are particularly upsetting,” says Schimanofsky.

“We expect that falls from windows and cases of drowning will happen as early as next month,” said the KFV managing director. “We should move from talking to action.”

In addition to setting up a separate ministry for child protection, the Board of Trustees for Road Safety is calling for an action plan with which measures to prevent child accidents are included in the government program and implemented. Swimming accidents can be counteracted with free swimming courses throughout Austria, but unfortunately there is no nationwide offer. “This is a relatively simple measure that can be implemented quickly and brings a lot,” says the KFV boss. A five-year-old girl recently drowned in a thermal bath in Burgenland. Swimming courses “can’t start early enough,” said Schimanofsky, and it would be ideal if children aged four and over learned to swim.

“We adults are to blame”

There is also a need for action on the road. “In 71 percent of the cases, we adults are to blame for the accident,” says Klaus Robatsch, Head of Traffic Safety at KFV. School children are out and about in traffic every day, on foot, by car, by bicycle or by scooter. Above all, the new means of transport are not taken into account in traffic planning, according to Robasch.


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Deborah Acker

I write epic fantasy; self-published via KDP. Devoted dog mom to my 10 yr old GSD, Shadow! DM not a priority; slow response at best #amwriting #author.

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