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According to the Arizona Governor’s Council on Spinal and Head Injuries, in the United States, about 10,000 people each year suffer from a spinal cord injury. The Governor’s office defines a spinal cord injury as,

a severance or injury to the spinal cord, which may result in partial or total paralysis of the arms, legs or both and may also impair vital functions.

The Governor’s Council suggests that we all take simple preventative steps to avoid becoming a victim of such horrific injuries.

According to the Governor’s Council, automobile collisions and violent intentional attacks are the highest source of spinal cord injuries. Simple preventative step can be taken to minimize the risk of traumatic spinal cord injury. According to the Governor’s Council,

The best way to prevent many of these injuries is to exercise diligent care in everything that you do. For example, use seat belts and don’t take unnecessary risks such as drinking and driving.

I believe that acting diligenty and cautiously in general minimizes the risk of any injuries. Mandating that adequate consumer safety devices exist on equipment requires government intervention, however, the threat of litigation motivates product manufacturers, distributors and suppliers to ensure that all proper safety precautions exist to prevent the risk of serious spinal cord injuires to consumers. So next time you drive a car and attach your seatbelt, keep in mind that seatbelts likely would not have existed if it were not for litigation. Also, keep in mind that wearing your safety belt is perhaps the simplest way to minimize the possibility of a spinal cord injury.

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