Daycare centers are a necessity for many families with preschool-aged children and working parents. Daycare costs take a big bite out of family budgets—particularly for single-parent homes. This might result in some daycare centers cutting corners in order to decrease their overhead so they can charge less. It can be challenging for parents to find daycare centers that are affordable and safe for their children.
Reasons Children Might Be Harmed at Daycare
Taking care of young children is a tough job, and kids getting hurt or ill is commonplace in any setting. But when children are at daycare centers, administrators and staff are responsible for taking all necessary measures to ensure the safety of children in their care. Some of the reasons children might get hurt at daycare include:
- Unqualified staff. Daycare centers often experience high turnover rates, which can lead to them hiring workers who may not be qualified. According to Texas law, all daycare workers must pass a background check and meet certain other requirements. If your child is injured while under the care of an unqualified staff member, the daycare center could be held liable for knowingly putting your child in harm’s way.
- Inadequate staffing. Texas law specifies daycare staff ratios. As children get older and more independent, the ratio changes. For example, one worker cannot have more than four babies under a year old under their care, but they may be able to supervise 26 six-year-olds. If there are too many children and too few staff, this can lead to negligence.
- Unsafe daycare facility. Daycare centers in Texas must follow an extensive list of safety practices that cover everything from the type of furniture to the frequency of sanitizing surfaces. Daycare centers should train staff in the expected cleanliness protocols and conduct inspections regularly to ensure safety regulations are being followed.
- Abuse. When children are physically or sexually abused by a daycare staff member, this person may face criminal charges. The daycare center may also be held responsible in a civil suit.
Types of Injuries at Unsafe Daycare Centers
Daycare centers include hazards that are not commonplace in the home, and in this environment, there is a greater chance of injuries such as the following:
- Playground injuries. The most common cause of injuries at daycare is outdoor play. This can include falls from playground equipment or injuries that result when equipment is not properly maintained. Other outdoor hazards include falls from trees and large rocks as well as falls on playground surfaces that are not properly maintained.
- Transportation injuries. Vehicle accidents can lead to serious injuries, including death.
- Choking. Young children like to put everything into their mouths, and daycare staff must be diligent about keeping small objects out of reach. They must also take care to feed children only age-appropriate foods to avoid choking.
- Inadequate safety equipment, such as smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms. Most people have heard stories of children dying at home daycare centers because there were not enough alarms in the house, causing children to die from smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Drowning. It only takes a few inches of water for very young children to drown. Daycare centers must keep swimming pools, bathtubs, and other containers that are filled with water away from kids.
Call a Texas Daycare Injury Attorney
If your child is injured at daycare because of unsafe conditions, contact an experienced attorney. Holding the daycare center accountable can help you recover any damages to which you may be entitled, and it can also help prevent other children from getting injured in the same way. At The Button Law Firm, we are dedicated to protecting children and making sure negligent daycares take responsibility. Connect with us through the link on this page or call us at 214-699-4409.