Restraint use and seating position among child car passengers: An observational study in Shanghai

Child passenger restraint practices in China are poorly characterized and few direct observational studies have been performed. This study aims to describe child passenger restraint use and to investigate factors influencing the restraint practices. A cross-sectional observational study was conducted at toll-gates in Shanghai during an 11-day period in June in 2009. A pro-forma observation checklist was used to collect data related to restraint use by child passengers aged ≤12 years, restraint use by drivers, and the number of child passengers traveling in passenger cars registered in Shanghai. Adjusted risk ratios (RR) comparing those children who were properly rear seated with those in other positions (front seat, on adult's lap) and any restraint use with no restraint use were evaluated using multivariate binomial regression with robust variance estimation. Among 967 children observed, 44.1% of children were in suboptimal seating positions (i.e., 12.2% in the front seat and 31.9% in adult laps) and 93.9% were unrestrained. Children aged ≤4 years (RR: 0.35, 95% Confidence Interval: 0.28-0.44), and those who were the only child in a car (RR: 0.84, 95% confidence interval: 0.74-0.96) had a lower likelihood of being properly rear seated. Children traveling with unrestrained drivers (RR: 0.09, 95% confidence interval: 0.01-0.60) were less likely to be restrained. This study demonstrates low restraint use and common suboptimal seating positions for child passengers in China and relates these to driver restraint use. These findings support the need for targeted programs to improve child restraint practices in China.


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  • Accession Number: 01352793
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Sep 15 2011 8:28AM