1997-11-12

Restraint Use Among Children in Fatal Crashes 973300

Using 1994 FARS, restraint use of children (0-9 years) in fatal crashes was characterized and outcomes of children in vehicles with a fatality were examined. Restraint use declined with age and was lower in older vehicles, in pickups and large vans, and during non-daylight hours. Infants had the highest proportion of deaths, sole fatalities, child restraint system (CRS) use, and on-lap and CRS fatalities. Children in seat belts were killed in proportions similar to unrestrained children. These findings identify infant occupant safety issues that need to be examined related to fragility, adequacy of child restraints and on-lap travel. Improvements in occupant protection are also needed for older children.

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