INJURIES TO CHILDREN IN AUTOMOBILES IN RELATION TO SEATING LOCATION AND RESTRAINT USE

Findings in this study are based on 26,971 passengers less than 15 years of age in reported crashes in 1967 and later model year automobiles in North Carolina during calender years 1973 and 1974. 1. Children least likely to be injured in crashes are restrained and in the back seat; those most likely to be injured are unrestrained and are in the front seat. Unrestrained children in the front right seat have the highest injury rate. 2. More than 90% of the children in the surveyed crashes were found unprotected by restraints--paralleling earlier findings for those in cars in general. 3. Back seat location reduced the injury rate by 28% among unrestrained children and 18% among restrained children. Use of restraints reduced the injury rate by 39% in the front seat and 31% in back. 4. Among unrestrained children, back seat location is advantageous for both males and females, for both younger and older children, and in automobiles of various sizes. The advantages of back seat location is most pronounced in frontal impacts. European laws regarding belt use and seating location, by in effect forbidding restraint use by some children, may increase the likelihood that those children will be injured in crashes. It is recommended that in automobiles without automatic restraints such as air cushions, children be restrained, preferably in the back seat, and that they never travel unrestrained in the front seat.

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 21 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00139856
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Highway Safety Research Institute
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 6 1976 12:00AM