Officials pushing for helmet safety after 2 Beaufort children injured

Officials pushing for helmet safety after 2 Beaufort children injured

BEAUFORT, SC (WTOC) - Two children in Beaufort are recovering from injuries they received in two separate ATV and skateboarding accidents.

First responders are urging parents to take precautions to keep their children out of harm's way.

Fire officials say whether you are riding a bike, ATV, skateboard, or on skates, you need a helmet. Spending as little as $10 on the extra protection could prevent head injuries, or even save a life.

On Sunday, within a three-hour period, Burton firefighters responded to two emergencies where 12-year-olds were injured.

"Children had fallen off of either a skateboard or ATV, and they weren't wearing helmets," said Lt. Alex Murray, Burton Fire District.

In both instances, officials say the children were not moving at a high rate of speed, and they still suffered serious injuries.

"Any padding that you can use to pad yourself from the ground is a great help. We look at what they call mechanism injury, which is depending on your speed and how you fall, and everything like that. Wearing that extra padding may save you a broken bone or a brain injury," Lt. Murray said.

Matt Hendley, an employee at All American Bike Rentals in Hilton Head, says many of the renters choose not to get helmets.

"Helmets are definitely recommended, but it still doesn't mean they're going to wear them. That should really change," Hendley said. He said that's an area where lawmakers could make a difference.

"Not many people ask for them, because there is no helmet law in South Carolina. I believe there should be a helmet law," Hendley said.

Until there is a helmet law in the state, Lt. Murray says it is up to parents and guardians to make sure children are protected.

"As a parent, you need to take that responsibility and ensure that your children wear the helmets when they're supposed to, and it's not always the most stylish thing, but wearing a helmet could save your life, so it's definitely worth it," Lt. Murray said.

First responders say both children received serious injuries. There is not yet an update on their conditions.

For more information on helmet safety, click here and here.

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