Beach umbrella safety urged, citing woman impaled at Jersey Shore
Weeks from the launch of the summer season at the Jersey Shore, there's a call to find out just how big and how dangerous the issue of flyaway beach umbrellas is.
New Jersey's Democratic U.S. senators have joined with fellow Democratic senators from Virginia in asking for more information from the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Bob Menendez and Cory Booker said a decade of data on the Safety Commission’s website through 2017 showed more than 31,000 people sought treatment at a hospital due to an umbrella-related injury.
A letter signed by the four politicians asks what safety standards are in-place, any known problems with specific beach umbrella products, and what is being done to best educate the public, on the risks and dangers of securing beach umbrellas to prevent injuries.
Last year, a beach umbrella came loose from the sand in Seaside Heights, impaling a British tourist through the ankle. The same summer, a woman on the beach in Ocean City, Maryland, was pierced below the collarbone by a beach umbrella.
In June 2016, a Virginia woman died after a stray umbrella punctured her torso.
And in 2015, a man lost an eye after it was gouged by a seven-foot-long beach umbrella at Bethany Beach, Delaware. That victim, Ed Quigley, created the website Beach Umbrella Safety, where he said "he doesn't want anyone else to go through the pain" that he experienced or the "anguish" that his family felt.
Quigley offers safety tips like buying the "safest umbrella", one with a vented fabric top and sturdy spokes, and being sure to use a sand anchor.
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