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Directions in Highway Safety Cover - Summer 2010 Download Newsletter pdf
[2.2 MB, 12 pgs.]

Fall 2010 | Vol. 12 | No. 5

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NHTSA Releases New Child Passenger Safety Data

Two new reports on child passenger safety data by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) showed that fewer children were injured or killed in traffic crashes in 2009, compared with 2008. However, the 2009 National Survey of the Use of Booster Seats (NSUBS) report found that a large number of children do not use age/size appropriate restraint when traveling in vehicles.

Traffic Safety Facts cover

In 2009, motor vehicle crashes were the leading cause of death for young people ages 3 to 14. That age group accounted for 1,314 (4%) of all traffic fatalities last year–a 3 percent decrease from the 1,350 fatalities in 2008. Of all the children involved in a fatal crash (where child restraint use was known), 23 percent were unrestrained; for children who were killed, that figure rose to 46 percent.

The report also provides data specific to children age 4 and younger killed in passenger vehicle crashes, child restraint use by race/ethnicity and age, and child pedestrian fatalities.

The 2009 NSUBS publication reports that 41 percent of 4- to 7-year-old children were restrained in booster seats in 2009, down slightly from 43 percent in 2008. Restraint use for children 1 to 3 increased from 92 to 96 percent, and restraint use for all children under 13 was the same as the prior year at 89 percent.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray La- Hood announced the findings of both these reports during National Child Passenger Safety Week, September 19-25, reminding parents to make sure their safety seats are installed correctly and always use them.

To download the fact sheet on 2009 traffic fatalities among children, go to Find the booster seat survey as