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Motor Vehicle Crash Injuries

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  • Each year more than 650 Oklahomans die and more than 35,000 are injured in motor vehicle crashes.
  • In 2011, there were 8 crashes every hour in Oklahoma.
  • Males are two times more likely than females to die in a motor vehicle crash.

Preventing Motor Vehicle Crashes

  • Seat Belts: A properly worn seat belt (both lap and shoulder belt) reduces the risk of serious or fatal injury during a crash by over 50%.
    • Drivers and front seat passengers are required by Oklahoma law to wear a seat belt.
    • More than half of Oklahomans killed in a motor vehicle crash were not using a seat belt.
  • Car Seats: Child safety seats can reduce fatal injury by up to 71% for infants and 54% for toddlers (ages 1- 4).
    • Children are more likely to be properly restrained when the driver is properly restrained.
    • Children under 13 years of age are required by Oklahoma law to be protected by a car seat or seat belt while traveling in a motor vehicle.
  • Teen Driver Safety: Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for Oklahoma teens ages 15-19.
    • New drivers tend to make some wrong decisions when first getting behind the wheel; the graduated driver licensing (GDL) system helps new drivers gain skills from stage to stage.
    • Supervised practice, continued guidance, and rules after licensing can help parents protect their teen drivers.
  • Impaired and Distracted Driving: Never drive under the influence (DUI). Drinking, or using any substance that can impair your driving, is dangerous and against the law, and could be fatal.
    • Convictions for DUI cases can range from a license suspension to jail time to a prison sentence, depending on the circumstances involved.
    • Distracted driving is any activity that diverts a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving. Before you start your car, put your cell phone away and secure your children in a child safety restraint. Avoid anything that can cause you to take your eyes off the road.

Internet Resources

  1. Oklahoma Highway Safety Office
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Motor Vehicle Safety
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Winnable Battles

 

Injury Prevention Service, OSDH, 1000 NE 10th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73117
Revised April 2013

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