Florida Accident Prevention: Sand Tunnels Pose Hidden Dangers

by Carmen Dellutri on August 23, 2011

Florida child injury lawyerFlorida parents can learn a lot from the story of one very lucky California teen who survived a potentially fatal beach accident several weeks ago. Matt Mina, 17, became trapped when the sand tunnel he was digging with a friend caved in on him.

He was trapped for over 30 minutes before firefighters and other rescuers were able to dig him out of the sand. Amazingly, he was didn’t suffer any serious injuries.


Sadly, this is not the only reported sand tunnel collapse this summer. In July, a 12-year-old boy was killed when he was trapped in a collapsed sand tunnel at a beach in Marin County, Calif.

On June 15, an Indiana teen was severely injured after collapsing sand buried him in a 7-foot pit that he had jumped into while joking with friends and relatives. On June 11, a 16-year-old boy was buried in sand when a beach tunnel he was digging at Loveladies beach in Long Beach, N.J. collapsed.

According to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine, more than two dozen children have been killed in sand hole collapses over the past ten years.

This is in large part because sand hole/tunnel collapses can occur rapidly and without warning, said Dr. Bradley Maron of Harvard Medical School, the report's lead author.

"Typically, victims became completely submerged in the sand when the walls of the hole unexpectedly collapsed, leaving virtually no evidence of the hole or location of the victim," wrote Maron.

To ensure that your children stay safe at the beach, her are a few tips to prevent a deadly sand tunnel accident:

  • Do not allow young children to play in sand unattended.
  • Do not allow a sand hole to get deeper than their knees.
  • Older children and adults should stay out of any hole deeper than a child's waist.
  • Hole diggers should fill their holes when they are done playing in them.

The Dellutri Law Group is focused on making bad situations better and putting lives back together. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Florida beach accident, you may be entitled to compensation.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our experienced injury attorneys for a free consultation.


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