Statistics on Traffic Accidents Involving Children

The leading cause of death of children between the ages of 4 and 14 is automobile accidents.

2,343 children between the ages of 0 and 14 died in traffic accidents.

291,000 children under 15 were injured in motor vehicle accidents.

An average of 6 children between 0 and 14 were killed and 797 were injured every day in car crashes.

20 percent of those children under 15 years old who were killed in traffic accidents lost their lives in alcohol-related ** accidents.

Of the children ages 0 to 14 who were killed in alcohol-related vehicle crashes, nearly 50 percent (223) were passengers in vehicles with drivers who had been drinking.

80 children under the age of 15 who were killed in traffic crashes were pedestrians or cyclists who were struck by drivers who had been drinking alcohol.

469 pedestrians between the ages of 0 and 14 were struck by motor vehicles and killed, and 59 percent of those killed were boys.

22,000 pedestrians under 15 were injured after being struck by a motor vehicle.

175 children between the ages of 0 and 14 were struck and killed by motor vehicles while riding a bicycle.

37 percent of cyclists injured in motor vehicle crashes were children under 15.

529 children under 5 years of age lost their lives while riding in a passenger vehicle. Of these, 251 were totally unrestrained.

8,145 passenger-vehicle occupants under 15 were involved in fatal crashes. 36 percent of those children who survived those crashes and 56 percent who were fatally injured were unrestrained.

From 1975 through 2000, safety belts and child-restraint systems saved the lives of an estimated 4,816 children.

Research shows that child safety seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants under one year of age and by 54 percent for toddlers between the ages of 1 and 4.

If child safety seats were used by all children younger than 5, an estimated 50,000 serious injuries would be prevented and 455 lives would be saved each year.

An accident is alcohol-related if either a driver or a non-occupant had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of.01 grams per deciliter or greater in a police-reported traffic crash. A person with a BAC of.10 grams per deciliter or greater is considered to be intoxicated.

Statistical Sources: United States Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, National Center for Statistics & Analysis, Traffic Safety Facts (2000); Pennsylvania State Data Center, Auto Accident Statistics Announced for Young Drivers in Pennsylvania (March 1999).

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