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Unintentional Childhood Injury-Related Deaths

Safe Kids Worldwide is an international organization dedicated solely to the
prevention of unintentional childhood injury, the leading killer of children between
the ages of 1 and 14.  The U.S. has witnessed an overall reduction in unintentional
injury-related mortality in the past two decades.  Safe Kids Worldwide has supported research,
development and implementation of various preventative safety programs to meet these injury needs through a network of 378 coalitions and 21 Member Countries.

Unintentional Injury-Related Death Rates

  • Unintentional injuries among children ages 14 and under have drastically decreased from 7,986 in 1987 to 4,643 in 2008
  • From 1987 to 2008 there has been over a 51 percent decrease in the unintentional injury death rate among children ages 14 years and under.

The number of unintentional injury-related deaths among children ages 14 and under has declined from 1987 to 2008:       
  • Overall motor vehicle fatalities declined from 3,261 deaths to 1,350 deaths.
  • Pedestrian injury fatalities declined from 1,000 deaths to 269 deaths.
  • Bicycle injury fatalities declined from 389 deaths to 84 deaths.
  • Drowning fatalities declined from 1,363 deaths to 745 deaths.
  • Fire and/or burn injury fatalities declined from 1,233 deaths to 366 deaths.
  • Suffocation and choking fatalities have risen from 690 deaths to 1,294 deaths.
  • Falls injury fatalities declined from 149 deaths to 91 deaths.
  • Poisoning fatalities have declined slightly from 100 deaths to 94 deaths.

Motor Vehicle Crash 3,261 1,350 -59%
Pedestrian Injury 1,000 269 -73%
Bicycle Injury 389 84 -78%
Drowning 1,363 745 -45%
Fire/Burn Injury 1,233 366 -70%
Suffocation 690 1,294 +88%
Falls 149 91 -39%
Poisoning 100 94 -6%


Injury Prevention Efforts

Child Safety Seats

  • All 50 states and the District of Columbia have child occupant protection laws, which vary widely in their age requirements, exemptions, enforcement procedures and penalties.  
  • A total of 47 states and the District of Columbia have enacted child booster seat laws, which require older child passengers to be properly secured in a child safety seat.

Bicycle Helmets

  • Twenty-one states, the District of Columbia and more than 200 localities have enacted some form of mandatory child bicycle helmet legislation.
  • Eight states and the District of Columbia now require children to wear a helmet while participating in other wheeled sports (e.g., scooters, inline skates, and skateboards) since the launch of Safe Kids Worldwide.

Fire and Burns

All code-making bodies on the national and regional levels have established plumbing standards for newly constructed homes and residential units requiring anti-scald technology and a maximum water heater temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Led by Northeast Georgia Medical Center and funded by The Medical Center Foundation's Healthy Journey Campaign
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