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MMWR
Synopsis for February 25, 2000

MMWR articles are embargoed until 4 p.m. E.S.T. Thursdays.

  1. Storm-Related Mortality Central Texas, October 1731, 1998
  2. Motor-vehicle Occupant Fatalities and Restraint Use Among Children Aged 48 Years United States, 19941998

MMWR
Synopsis for February 25, 2000

Storm-Related Mortality Central Texas, October 1731, 1998

A series of storms in Central Texas cause deaths in 24 separate incidents in nine Texas counties.

 
PRESS CONTACT:
David Zane, M.S.
Texas Department of Health
(512) 4587266
On October 17, 1998, a series of storms moved across the Central Texas and South Texas regions, dropping more than 15 inches of rain in many areas and spawning several tornadoes. An epidemiologic investigation was conducted of the deaths associated with the storm system. Thirty-one deaths were considered directly or indirectly related to the storm (29 directly and two indirectly). Three-quarters of the deaths with known circumstances occurred because a motor vehicle was driven into flood waters. The findings in this report underscore the importance of educating persons residing in flood-prone locations about the hazards of driving vehicles through areas inundated by flash floods and through swiftly moving flood waters. This report summarizes findings of an investigation of deaths associated with a storm system.

 

Motor-vehicle Occupant Fatalities and Restraint Use Among Children Aged 48 Years United States, 19941998

More children, 48 years of age, die as occupants in car crashes than any other form of unintentional injury.

 
PRESS CONTACT:
Steve Trockman, M.P.H., C.H.E.S.
CDC, National Center for Injury Prevention & Control
(770) 4884652
(Alternate: Ann Dellinger, Ph.D., M.P.H., same phone number)
Approximately 500 motor-vehicle occupants aged 4-8 years died each year between 1994-1998. Despite ongoing efforts by the public health and traffic safety communities to encourage proper restraint use and seating position among all children riding in motor vehicles, little change occurred in the death rate, restraint use, and seating position among children aged 4-8 years during this period. Having outgrown child safety seats (CSSs) designed for younger passengers, children aged 4-8 years frequently sit unrestrained or are placed prematurely in adult seat belt systems. In addition, a large proportion of children involved in fatal crashes are seated in the front seat. The 50 states, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico have child-passenger safety laws; however, substantial gaps in coverage exist for child passengers aged 4-8 years.

 


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